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Full text of "Ecclesiastical biography : or, Lives of eminent men connected with the history of religion in England ; from the commencement of the Reformation to the revolution"

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Ex Libris Gulielrni Kenneth 
Macrorie;D.D. Episcopi Can- 
onici Eliensis qui migravit 
ab L uce XVI? Kal.Och nrvcmv 
anno LXXV2 oefextis suoe 

iral Li' 























I. GEORGE HERBERT Isaac Walton. 1 

II. SIR HENRY WOTTON Isaac Walton. 65 

III. NICHOLAS FERRAR Dr. Peckard. 117 

IV. BISHOP HALI Himself. 265 

V. DR. HENRY HAMMOND Bishop Fell. 327 

VI. BISHOP SANDERSON Isaac Walton. 409 


VIII. SIR MATTHEW HALE Bishop Burnet. 521 

IX. EARL OF ROCHESTER Bishop Burnet. 599 


INDEX 727 

We exhort all that desire to be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus, that 
they decline from these horrid doctrines of the Papacy, which in their birth 
are new, in their growth are scandalous, in their proper consequents are infi- 
nitely dangerous to their souls. But therefore it is highly fit that they should 
also perceive their own advantages, and give God praise that they are 
removed from such infinite dangers, by the holy precepts, and holy faith 
taught and commanded in the Church of England and Ireland ; in which the 
Word of God is set before them as a lantern to their feet, and a light unto 
their eyes ; and the Sacraments are fully administered according to Christ's 
institution; and Repentance is preached according to the measures of the 
Gospel; and Faith in Christ is propounded according to the rule of the 
Apostles, and the measures of the Churches Apostolical ; and Obedience to 
kings is greatly and sacredly urged ; and the authority and order of Bishops is 
preserved, against the usurpation of the Pope, and the invasion of Schis- 
matics and Aerians, new and old ; and Truth and Faith to all men is kept 
and preached to be necessary and inviolable ; and the Commandments are 
expounded with just severity and without scruples; and Holiness of Life 
is urged upon all men as indispensably necessary to salvation, and therefore 
without any allowances, tricks, and little artifices of escaping from it by 
easy and imperfect doctrines ; and every thing is practised which is useful to 
the saving of our souls; and Christ's Merits and Satisfaction are entirely 
relied upon for the pardon of our sins ; and the necessity of Good Works is 
universally taught; and our Prayers are holy, unblameable, edifying, and 
understood ; are according to the measures of the Word of God, and the 
practice of all Saints. In this Church, the children are duly Baptized ; and 
the baptized in their due time are Confirmed ; and the confirmed are Com- 
municated; and Penitents are absolved, and the impenitents punished and 
discouraged ; and Holy Marriage in all men is preferred before unclean 
concubinate in any ; and nothing is wanting that God and his Church hath 
made necessary to salvation. 




The world o'erlooks him in her husy search 

Of objects more illustrious in her view; 

And occupied as earnestly as she, 

Though more sublimely, he o'erlooks the world. 

She scorns his pleasures, for she knows them not : 

He seeks not her's, for he has found them vain. 

Not slothful he, though seeming unemployed, 

And censured oft as useless. 

Perhaps the self-approving haughty world 
Receives advantage from his noiseless hours 
Of which she little dreams. Perhaps she owes 
Her sunshine and her rain, her blooming spring 
And plenteous harvests to the prayer he makes, 
Thinking for her who thinks not for herself. 



IN a late retreat from the business of this world, and those many 
little cares with which I have too often cumbered myself, I fell 
into a contemplation of some of those historical passages that are 
recorded in sacred story; and, more particularly, of what had 
passed betwixt our blessed Saviour, and that wonder of women, 
and sinners, and mourners, saint Mary Magdalen. I call her 
saint, because I did not then, nor do now consider her, as when 
she was possest with seven devils ; not as when her wanton eyes, 
and dishevelled hair, were designed and managed, to charm and 
insnare amorous beholders : but, I did then, and do now consider 
her, as after she had exprest a visible and sacred sorrow for her 
sensualities ; as, after those eyes had wept such a flood of peni- 
tential tears as did wash, and that hair had wiped, and she most 
passionately kist the feet of her and our blessed Jesus. And, I 
do now consider, that because she loved much, not only much was 
forgiven her ; but that, beside that blessed blessing of having her 
sins pardoned, and the joy of knowing her happy condition, she 
also had from him a testimony, that her alabaster box of precious 
ointment poured on his head and feet, and that spikenard, and 
those spices that were by her dedicated to embalm and preserve 
his sacred body from putrefaction, should so far preserve her own 
memory, that these demonstrations of her sanctified love, and of 
her officious and generous gratitude, should be recorded and 
mentioned wheresoever his gospel should be read; intending 
thereby, that as his, so her name should also live to succeeding 
generations, even till time itself shall be no more. 

Upon occasion of which fair example, I did lately look back, 
and not without some content (at least to myself) that I have 
endeavoured to deserve the love, and preserve the memory of my 
two deceased friends, Dr. Donne, and sir Henry Wotton, by 

B 2 


declaring the several employments and various accidents of their 
lives : and, though Mr. George Herbert (whose life I now intend 
to write) were to me a stranger as to his person, for I have only 
seen him ; yet, since he was, and was worthy to be their friend, 
and very many of his have been mine, I judge it may not be 
unacceptable to those that knew any of them in their lives, or do 
now know them, by mine, or their own writings, to see this con- 
junction of them after their deaths ; without which, many things 
that concerned them, and some things that concerned the age in 
which they lived, would be less perfect, and lost to posterity. 

For these reasons I have undertaken it, and if I have prevented 
any abler person, I beg pardon of him, and my reader. 


GEORGE HERBERT was born the third day of April, in the year 
of our redemption 1593. The place of his birth was near to the 
town of Montgomery, and in that castle that did then bear the 
name of that town and county. That castle was then a place of 
state and strength, and had been successively happy in the family 
of the Herberts, who had long possest it ; and, with it, a plentiful 
estate, and hearts as liberal to their poor neighbours. A family, 
that hath been blest with men of remarkable wisdom, and a wil- 
lingness to serve their country, and indeed, to do good to all 
mankind ; for which they are eminent. But alas ! this family did 
in the late rebellion suffer extremely in their estates ; and the 
heirs of that castle saw it laid level with that earth that was too 
good to bury those wretches that were the cause of it. 

The father of our George was Richard Herbert, the son of 
Edward Herbert, knight, the son of Richard Herbert, knight, the 
son of the famous sir Richard Herbert, of Colebrook, in the 
county of Monmouth, baronet, who was the youngest brother of 
that memorable William Herbert, earl of Pembroke, that lived 
in the reign of our king Edward the fourth. 

His mother was Magdalen Newport, the youngest daughter of 
sir Richard, and sister to sir Francis Newport, of High Arkall, 
in the county of Salop, knight, and grandfather of Francis, lord 
Newport *, now comptroller of his majesty's houshold. A family, 
that for their loyalty, have suffered much in their estates, and 
seen the ruin of that excellent structure, where their ancestors 
have long lived, and been memorable for their hospitality. 

1 Francis, lord Newport.'] Afterwards, in 1675, created Viscount Newport, 
and in 1694, earl of Bradford: which titles, extinct in 1762, were revived in 
1815, in the family of Bridgman, connected with the Newports by female 


This mother of George Herbert (of whose person, and wisdom 
and virtue, I intend to give a true account in a seasonable place) 
was the happy mother of seven sons, and three daughters, which 
she would often say, was Job's number, and Job's distribution ; 
and, as often bless God, that they were neither defective in their 
shapes, or in their reason ; and very often reprove them that did 
not praise God for so great a blessing. I shall give the reader a 
short account of their names, and not say much of their fortunes. 

Edward, the eldest, was first made knight of the bath at that 
glorious time of our late prince Henry's being installed knight of 
the garter ; and after many years useful travel, and the attain- 
ment of many languages, he was by king James sent ambassador 
resident to the then French king, Lewis the thirteenth. There 
he continued about two years ; but, he could not subject himself 
to a compliance with the humours of the duke de Luines, who 
was then the great and powerful favourite at court ; so that upon 
a complaint to our king, he was called back into England in some 
displeasure ; but at his return he gave such an honourable account 
of his employment, and so justified his comportment to the duke, 
and all the court, that he was suddenly sent back upon the same 
embassy, from which he returned in the beginning of the reign of 
our good king Charles the first, who made him first baron of 
Castle- Island 2 , and not long after 3 of Cherbury, in the county of 
Salop. He was a man of great learning and reason, as appears 
by his printed book de veritate ; and by his History of the Reign 
of King Henry the Eighth, and by several other tracts. 

The second and third brothers were Richard and William, who 
ventured their lives to purchase honour in the wars of the Low 
Countries, and died officers in that employment. Charles was 
the fourth, and died fellow of New-college in Oxford. Henry was 
the sixth, who became a menial servant to the crown in the days 
of king James, and hath continued to be so for fifty years: 
during all which time he hath been master of the revels ; a place 
that requires a diligent wisdom, with which God hath blest him. 
The seventh son was Thomas, who being made captain of a ship 
in that fleet with which sir Robert Mansel was sent against 
Algiers 4 , did there shew a fortunate and true English valour. Of 
the three sisters, I need not say more, than tliat they were all 

3 Baron of Castle- Island '.] In Ireland. 3 Not long after.] May 7, 1629. 
4 Against Algiers.'] In 1620. 


married to persons of worth, and plentiful fortunes ; and lived to 
be examples of virtue, and to do good in their generations. 

I now come to give my intended account of George, who was 
the fifth of those seven brothers. 

George Herbert spent much of his childhood in a sweet content 
under the eye and care of his prudent mother, and the tuition of 
a chaplain or tutor to him, and two of his brothers, in her own 
family (for she was then a widow) where he continued, till about 
the age of twelve years ; and being at that time well instructed 
in the rules of grammar, he was not long after commended to the 
care of Dr. Neale, who was then dean of Westminster ; and by 
him to the care of Mr. Ireland, who was then chief master of that 
school ; where the beauties of his pretty behaviour and wit shined 
and became so eminent and lovely in this his innocent age, that 
he seemed to be marked out for piety, and to become the care of 
heaven, and of a particular good angel to guard and guide him. 
And thus he continued in that school, till he came to be perfect 
in the learned languages, and especially in the Greek tongue, in 
which he after proved an excellent critic. 

About the age of fifteen (he being then a king's scholar,) he 
was elected out of that school for Trinity college in Cambridge, to 
which place he was transplanted about the year 1608; and his 
prudent mother well knowing, that he might easily lose, or lessen 
that virtue and innocence which her advice and example had 
planted in his mind, did therefore procure the generous and 
liberal Dr. Nevil 5 , who was then dean of Canterbury, and master 
of that college, to take him into his particular care, and pro- 
vide him a tutor ; which he did most gladly undertake, for he 
knew the excellencies of his mother, and how to value such a 

This was the method of his education, till he was settled in 
Cambridge ; where we will leave him in his study, till I have paid 
my promised account of his excellent mother ; and I will endea- 
vour to make it short. 

I have told her birth, her marriage, and the number of her 
children, and have given some short account of them. I shall 
next tell the reader, that her husband died when our George was 
about the age of four years. I am next to tell that she continued 

6 Dr. Nevil.'] Whose life has been written by the late archdeacon J. H. 
Todd, amongst those of the other deans of Canterbury. 


twelve years a widow : that she then married happily to a noble 
gentleman 8 , the brother and heir of the lord Danvers earl of 
Danby, who did highly value both her person and the most excel- 
lent endowments of her mind. 

In this time of her widowhood, she being desirous to give 
Edward her eldest son, such advantages of learning, and other 
education as might suit his birth and fortune, and thereby make 
him the more fit for the service of his country, did at his being of 
a fit age, remove from Montgomery castle with him, and some of 
her younger sons to Oxford 7 ; and, having entered Edward into 
Queen's college, and provided him a fit tutor, she commended him 
to his care; yet, she continued there with him, and still kept 
him in a moderate awe of herself; and so much under her own 
eyes, as to see and converse with him daily ; but she managed 
this power over him without any such rigid sourness, as might 
make her company a torment to her child; but, with such a 
sweetness and compliance with the recreations and pleasures of 
youth, as did incline him willingly to spend much of his time in 

6 A noble gentleman."} Sir John Danvers, who was of very different opinions 
from his brother, the loyal earl of Danby. He was member for the university 
of Oxford in the last two parliaments of Charles I., and when the troubles 
began he became an open enemy to the king, taking a commission as colonel 
in the parliamentary army. He sat as one of the judges on the trial of 
Charles I., and signed the warrant for his execution. Lord Clarendon says 
of him, " Between being seduced, and a seducer, he became so far involved in 
their councils, that he suffered himself to be applied to their worst offices, 
taking it to be a high honor to sit upon the same bench with Cromwell, who 
employed and contemned him at once. Nor did that party of miscreants look 
upon any two men in the kingdom with that scorn and detestation as they 
did upon Danvers and Mildmay." His brother, the earl of Danby, disinherited 
him, but the parliament declared the will to be void. He died before the 
Restoration, but his name was inserted in the act excepting him from pardon, 
as if living, by which means his wealth was lost to his heir. His excellent 
wife, whose influence might have saved him, was buried at Chelsea, June 8, 
1627; Dr. Donne preached her funeral sermon. Sir John Danvers had no 
issue by her, but by his second wife Elizabeth, grandchild and heir of sir 
John Dauntsey of Lavington in Wiltshire, he had a daughter Elizabeth, 
wife of the notorious Robert Villiers, second Viscount Purbeck, who professed 
hatred to the name of Villiers, and took the name of Danvers. Their de- 
scendants claimed unsuccessfully the earldom of Buckingham. 

7 To Oxford.'] " For their education she went and dwelt in the university, 
to recompence the loss of their father " (as Barnabas Oley prettily expresses 
it) " by giving them two mothers." Life of Mr. George Herbert, signat. K 9, 
subjoined to his Country Parson. 


the company of his dear and careful mother ; which was to her 
great content; for, she would often say, "That as our bodies 
take a nourishment suitable to the meat on which we feed ; so, 
our souls do as insensibly take in vice by the example or conver- 
sation with wicked company :" and, would therefore, as often say, 
" That ignorance of vice was the best preservation of virtue : and, 
that the very knowledge of wickedness was as tinder to inflame 
and kindle sin, and to keep it burning." For these reasons she 
endeared him to her own company ; and continued with him in 
Oxford four years : in which time, her great and harmless wit, 
her cheerful gravity, and her obliging behaviour, gained her an 
acquaintance and friendship with most of any eminent worth and 
learning, that were at that time in or near that university ; and 
particularly, with Mr. John Donne, who then came accidentally 
to that place, in this time of her being there : it was that John 
Donne who was after doctor Donne, and dean of Saint Pauls, 
London : and he at his leaving Oxford, writ and left there in verse 
a character of the beauties of her body and mind. Of the first, 
he says, 

" No spring nor summer-beauty, has such grace 
As I have seen in an autumnal face." 

Of the latter he says, 

" In all her words to every hearer fit 
You may at revels, or at council sit." 

The rest of her character may be read in his printed poems, 
in that elegy which bears the name of the Autumnal Beauty. 
For both he and she were then past the meridian of man's life. 

This amity, begun at this time, and place, was not an amity 
that polluted their souls ; but, an amity made up of a chain of 
suitable inclinations and virtues ; an amity, like that of St. Chry- 
sostonVs to his dear and virtuous Olympias ; whom, in his letter 
he calls his saint : or, an amity indeed more like that of St. 
Hierom to his Paula ; whose affection to her was such, that he 
turned poet in his old age, and then made her epitaph ; wishing 
all his body were turned into tongues, that he might declare her 

just praises to posterity. And this amity betwixt her and Mr. 

Donne, was begun in a happy time for him, he being then near to 
the fortieth year of his age (which was some years before he 


entered into sacred orders) : a time, when his necessities needed 
a daily supply for the support of his wife, seven children, and a 
family : and in this time she proved one of his most bountiful 
benefactors : and he, as grateful an acknowledger of it. You 
may take one testimony for what I have said of these two worthy 
persons, from this following letter, and sonnet. 

u Madam, 

" Your favours to me are every where : I use them, and have 
them. I enjoy them at London, and leave them there ; and yet, 
find them at Mitcham. Such riddles as these become things 
unexpressible, and, such is your goodness. I was almost sorry to 
find your servant here this day, because I was loth to have any 
witness of my not coming home last night, and indeed of my 
coming this morning : but, my not coming was excusable, because 
earnest business detained me ; and my coming this day, is by the 
example of your St. Mary Magdalen, who rose early upon Sun- 
day, to seek that which she loved most ; and so did I. And, 
from her and myself, I return such thanks as are due to one to 
whom we owe all the good opinion, that they whom we need most, 
have of us. By this messenger, and on this good day, I com- 
mit the inclosed holy hymns and sonnets (which for the matter, 
not the workmanship, have yet escaped the fire) to your judg- 
ment, and to your protection too, if you think them worthy of it : 
and I have appointed this inclosed sonnet to usher them to your 
happy hand. 

" Your unworthiest servant, 

" unless, your accepting him to be so, 
" have mended him, 

"Mitcham, July 11, 1607. "Jo. DONNE." 

To the Lady Magdalen Herbert ; of St. Mary Magdx!, i> . 

Her of your name, whose fair inheritance 

Hethina was, and jointure Magdalo ; 
An active faith so highly did advance, 

That she once knew, more than the church did know, 
The resurrection ; so much good there is 

Deliver'd of her, that some fathers be 
Loth to believe one woman could do this ; 

But, think these Magdalens were two or three. 


Increase their number, lady, and their fame : 

To their devotion and your innocence : 
Take so much of th' example, as of the name ; 

The latter half; and in some recompence 
That they did harbour Christ himself, a guest, 
Harbour these hymns, to his dear name addrest. 

J. D. 

These hymns are now lost to us ; but, doubtless, they were 
such, as they two now sing in heaven. 

There might be more demonstrations of the friendship, and the 
many sacred endearments betwixt these two excellent persons (for 
I have many of their letters in my hand) and much more might 
be said of her great prudence and piety : but, my design was not 
to write her's, but the life of her son ; and therefore I shall only 
tell my reader, that about that very day twenty years that this 
letter was dated, and sent her, I saw and heard this Mr. John 
Donne, (who was then dean of St. Paul's) weep, and preach her 
funeral sermon, in the parish-church of Chelsea near London, 
where she now rests in her quiet grave : and, where we must now 
leave her, and return to her son George, whom we left in his 
study in Cambridge. 

And in Cambridge we may find our George Herbert's behaviour 
to be such, that we may conclude, he consecrated the first-fruits 
of his early age to virtue, and a serious study of learning. And 
that he did so, this following letter and sonnet which were in the 
first year of his going to Cambridge sent his dear mother for a 
new-year's gift, may appear to be some testimony. 

" But I fear the heat of my late ague hath dried up those 
springs, by which scholars say, the Muses use to take up their 
habitations. However, I need not their help, to reprove the 
vanity of those many love-poems, that are daily writ and conse- 
crated to Venus ; nor to bewail that so few are writ, that look 
towards God and heaven. For my own part, my meaning (dear 
mother) is in these sonnets, to declare my resolution to be, that 
my poor abilities in poetry, shall be all, and ever consecrated to 
God's glory : and I beg you to receive this as one testimony." 

My God, where is that ancient heat towards thee, 
Wherewith whole shoals of martyrs once did burn, 

Besides their other flames ? Doth poetry 
Wear Venus' livery ? only serve her turn ? 


Why are not sonnets made of thee ? and lays 

Upon thine altar burnt ? Cannot thy love 
Heighten a spirit to sound out thy praise 

As well as any she ? Cannot thy dove 
Out-strip their Cupid easily in flight ? 

Or, since thy ways are deep, and still the same, 

Will not a verse run smooth that bears thy name ! 
Why doth that fire, which by thy power and might 

Each breast does feel, no braver fuel choose 

Than that, which one day worms may chance refuse ? 
Sure, Lord, there is enough in thee to dry 

Oceans of ink ; for, as the deluge did 
Cover the earth, so doth thy majesty : 

Each cloud distils thy praise, and doth forbid 
Poets to turn it to another use. 

Roses and lilies speak thee ; and to make 
A pair of cheeks of them, is thy abuse. 

Why should I women's eyes for chrystal take ? 
Such poor invention burns in their low mind 

Whose fire is wild, and doth not upward go 

To praise, and on thee, Lord, some ink bestow. 
Open the bones, and you shall nothing find 

In the best face but filth ; when, Lord, in thee 

The beauty lies, in the discovery. 

G. H. 

This was his resolution at the sending this letter to his dear 
mother ; about which time, he was in the seventeenth year of his 
age : and as he grew older, so he grew in learning, and more and 
more in favour both with God and man ; insomuch, that in this 
morning of that short day of his life, he seemed to be marked out 
for virtue, and to become the care of heaven ; for God still kept 
his soul in so holy a frame, that he may, and ought to be a pattern 
of virtue to all posterity, and especially, to his brethren of the 
clergy ; of which the reader may expect a more exact account in 
what will follow. 

I need not declare that he was a strict student, because, that 
he was so, there will be many testimonies in the future part of liis 
life. I shall therefore only tell, that he was made batchelor of 
arts in the year 1611 ; major fellow of the college, March 15, 
1615 ; and that, in that year, he was also made master of arts, 
he being then in the 22d year of his age ; during all which time. 
all, or the greatest diversion from his study, was the practice of 
music, in which he became a great master ; and of which, he 
would say, " That it did relieve his drooping spirits, compose his 


distracted thoughts, and raised his weary soul so far above earth, 
that it gave him an earnest of the joys of heaven," before he pos- 
sest them. And it may be noted, that from his first entrance 
into the college, the generous Dr. Nevil was a cherisher of his 
studies, and such a lover of his person, his behaviour, and the 
excellent endowments of his mind, that he took him often into 
his own company ! by which he confirmed his native gentleness. 
And if during this time he exprest any error, it was that he kept 
himself too much retired, and at too great a distance with all his 
inferiors ; and his cloaths seemed to prove that he put too great 
a value on his parts and parentage. 

This may be some account of his disposition, and of the 
employment of his time till he was master of arts, which was 
anno 1615, and in the year 1619 he was chosen orator for the 
university. His two precedent orators were sir Robert Nanton 
and sir Francis Nethersoll. The first was not long after made 
secretary of state ; and sir Francis, not very long after his being 
orator, was made secretary to the lady Elizabeth, queen of 
Bohemia. In this place of orator our George Herbert con- 
tinued eight years, and managed it with as becoming and grave a 
gaiety as any had ever before or since his time. For he had 
acquired great learning, and was blest with a high fancy, a civil 
and sharp wit, and with a natural elegance both in his behaviour, 
his tongue, and his pen. Of all which there might be very many 
particular evidences ; but I will limit myself to the mention of 
but three. 

And the first notable occasion of shewing his fitness for this 
employment of orator was manifested in a letter to King James, 
upon the occasion of his sending that university his book, called 
Basilicon Doron 8 ; and their orator was to acknowledge this great 
honour, and return their gratitude to his majesty for such a 
condescension ; at the close of which letter he writ, 

" Quid Vaticanam Bodleianamque objicis hospes ! 
Unicus est nobis bibliotheca liber." 

This letter was writ in such excellent Latin, was so full of 
conceits, and all the expressions so suited to the genius of the 
king, that he inquired the orator's name, and then asked William 

8 Basilicon Doron.'] The original, written in James's own hand, is preserved 
amongst the royal manuscripts in the British Museum. 


earl of Pembroke if lie knew him ? whose answer was, " That he 
knew him very well, and that he was his kinsman ; but he loved 
him more for his learning and virtue than for that he was of his 
name and family." At which answer the king smiled, and asked 
the earl leave "that he might love him too ; for he took him to 
be the jewel of that university." 

The next occasion he had and took to shew his great abilities 
was, with them, to shew also his great affection to that church in 
which he received his baptism, and of which he profest himself a 
member; and the occasion was this. There was one Andrew 
Melvin 9 , a minister of the Scotch church, and rector of St. 
AndrewX who, by a long and constant converse with a discon- 
tented part of that clergy which opposed episcopacy, became at 
last to be a chief leader of that faction ; and had proudly ap- 
peared to be so to king James, when he was but king of that 
nation ; who the second year after his coronation in England 
convened a part of the bishops and other learned divines of his 
church to attend him at Hampton Court, in order to a friendly 
conference with some dissenting brethren, both of this and the 
church of Scotland ; and he being a man of learning, and inclined 
to satirical poetry, had scattered many malicious bitter verses 
against our liturgy, our ceremonies, and our church government ; 
which were by some of that party so magnified for the wit, that 
they were therefore brought into Westminster school, where 
Mr. George Herbert then, and often after, made such answers 
to them, and such reflexion on him and his kirk, as might 
unbeguile any man that was not too deeply pre-engaged in such 

a quarrel. But to return to Mr. Melvin at Hampton Court 

conference : he there appeared to be a man of an unruly wit, of a 
strange confidence, of so furious a zeal, and of so ungoverned 
passions, that his insolence to the king and others at this con- 
ference lost him both his rectorship of St. Andrew"^ and his 
liberty too ; for his former verses, and his present reproaches 
there used against the church and state, caused him to be com- 
mitted prisoner to the Tower of London, where he remained 
very angry for three years. At which time of his commitment 
he found the lady Arabella l an innocent prisoner there ; and he 
pleased himself much in sending, the next day after his commit- 

9 Melvin.'] Or Melville, the follower and successor of John Knox. 
1 The lady Arabella.'] Lady Arabella Stuart. 


ment, these two verses to the good lady 2 , which I will under- 
write, because they may give the reader a taste of his others, 
which were like these 3 . 

" Causa tibi mecum est communis carceris, Ara- 
Bella tibi causa est, Araque sacra mini." 

I shall not trouble my reader with an account of his enlarge- 
ment from that prison, or his death ; but tell him, Mr. Herbert's 
verses were thought so worthy to be preserved, that Dr. Duport, 
the learned dean of Peterborough, hath lately collected, and 
caused many of them to be printed, as an honourable memorial 
of his friend Mr. George Herbert and the cause he undertook. 

And in order to my third and last observation of his great 
abilities, it will be needful to declare, that about this time king 
James came very often to hunt at New- Market and Royston ; 
and was almost as often invited to Cambridge, where his enter- 
tainment was comedies suited to his pleasant humour, and where 
Mr. George Herbert was to welcome him with gratulations, and 
the applauses of an orator ; which he always performed so well 
that he still grew more into the king's favour, insomuch that he 
had a particular appointment to attend his majesty at Royston, 
where, after a discourse with him, his majesty declared to his 
kinsman, the earl of Pembroke, " That he found the orator's 
learning and wisdom much above his age or wit." The year 
following, the king appointed to end his progress at Cambridge, 
and to stay there certain days ; at which time he was attended 
by the great secretary of nature and all learning, sir Francis 
Bacon (lord Verulam) and by the ever memorable and learned 
Dr. Andrews, bishop of Winchester, both of which did at that 
time begin a desired friendship with our orator. Upon whom the 
first put such a value on his judgment, that he usually desired his 
approbation before he would expose any of his books to be 

2 To the good lady.'] Rather to her husband, William Seymour, afterwards 
marquis of Hertford, who, as it is well known, was imprisoned for marrying 
her without the king's consent. Arabella Stuart was first cousin to James I., 
who was jealous, and not without reason, of her rights to the throne of England. 
Her story is best told by lady Theresa Lewis in The Gallery of Lord Chancellor 
Clarendon and his Contemporaries, vol. i. 

3 Like these.'] Fuller, in his Church History, gives the lines thus : 

" Causa mihi tecum communis carceris, Ara 
Regia Bella tibi, regia sacra mihi." 


printed ; and thought him so worthy of his friendship, that 
having translated many of the prophet David's Psalms into 
English verse, he made George Herbert his patron, by a public 
dedication of them to him, as the best judge of divine poetry. 
And for the learned bishop, it is observable that at that time 
there fell to be a modest debate betwixt them two, about predes- 
tination and sanctity of life ; of both which the orator did not 
long after send the bishop some safe and useful aphorisms, in a 
long letter written in Greek ; which letter was so remarkable for 
the language and reason of it, that after the reading it, the bishop 
put it into his bosom, and did often shew it to many scholars, 
both of this and foreign nations ; but did always return it back to 
the place where he first lodged it, and continued it so near his 
heart till the last day of his life. 

To these I might add the long and entire friendship betwixt 
him and sir Henry Wotton, and doctor Donne, but I have pro- 
mised to contract myself, and shall therefore only add one testi- 
mony to what is also mentioned 4 in the life of doctor Donne ; 
namely, that a little before his death he caused many seals to be 
made, and in them to be engraven the figure of Christ crucified 
on an anchor (the emblem of hope,) and of which Dr. Donne 

would often say, Crux mihi ancliora. These seals he gave or 

sent to most of those friends on which he put a value ; and at 
Mr. Herberts death these verses were found wrapt up with that 
seal which was by the doctor given to him. 

" When my dear friend could write no more, 
He gave this seal, and so gave o'er. 

" When winds and waves rise highest, I am sure, 
This anchor keeps my faith, that me secure." 

At this time of being orator he had learnt to understand the 
Italian, Spanish, and French tongues very perfectly ; hoping that 
as his predecessors, so he might in time attain the place of a 
secretary of state, he being at that time very high in the king^s 
favour, and not meanly valued and loved by the most eminent 
and most powerful of the court nobility. This, and the love of a 
court conversation, mixt with a laudable ambition to be some- 
thing more than he then was, drew him often from Cambridge to 
attend the king wheresoever the court was, who then gave him a 

4 Alto mentioned.] At vol. iii. p. 6G7, and also, in the Life of Hooker, p. 540, n. 


sinecure 5 , which fell into his majesty's disposal, I think, by the 
death of the bishop of St. Asaph. It was the same that queen 
Elizabeth had formerly given to her favourite sir Philip Sidney, 
and valued to be worth an hundred and twenty pounds per 
annum. With this, and his annuity, and the advantage of his 
college, and of his oratorship, he enjoyed his genteel humour for 
cloaths and court-like company, and seldom looked towards 
Cambridge, unless the king were there, but then he never failed ; 
and at other times left the manage of his orator's place to his 
learned friend Mr. Herbert Thorndike, who is now prebend of 

I may not omit to tell, that he had often designed to leave the 
university, and decline all study, which he thought did impair his 
health ; for he had a body apt to a consumption, and to fevers, 
and to other infirmities, which he judged were increased by his 
studies ; for he would often say, " He had too thoughtful a 
wit : a wit, like a pen-knife in too narrow a sheath, too sharp 
for his body." But his mother would by no means allow him to 
leave the university or to travel ; and though he inclined very 
much to both, yet he would by no means satisfy his own desires 
at so dear a rate as to prove an undutiful son to so affectionate a 
mother, but did always submit to her wisdom. And what I have 
now said may partly appear in a copy of verses in his printed 
poems ; it is one of those that bears the title of Affliction : and 
it appears to be a pious reflection on God's providence, and some 
passages of his life, in which he says, 

Whereas my birth and spirit rather took 

The way that takes the town : 
Thou didst betray me to a ling'ring book, 

And wrap me in a gown : 
I was entangled in the world of strife 
Before I had the power to change my life. 

Yet, for I threatened oft the siege to raise, 

Not simp'ring all mine age : 
Thou often didst with academic praise, 

Melt and dissolve my rage : 
I took the sweetened pill, till I came where 
I could not go away nor persevere. 

3 A sinecure.~] The place of cup-bearer to the king. 
VOL. iv. 


Yet, least perchance I should too happy be 

In my unhappiness, 
Turning my purge to food, thou throwest me 

Into more sicknesses. 

Thus doth thy power cross-bias me, not making 
Thine own gifts good, yet me from my ways taking. 

Now I am here, what thou wilt do with me 

None of my books will shew : 
I read, and sigh, and wish I were a tree, 

For then sure I should grow 
To fruit or shade ; at least, some bird would trust 
Her houshold with me, and I would be just. 

Yet, though thou troublest me, I must be meek ; 

In weakness must be stout : 
Well, I will change my service, and go seek 

Some other master out : 
Ah, my dear God ! though I am clean forgot, 
Let me not love thee, if I love thee not. 

G. H. 

In this time of Mr. Herberts attendance and expectation of 
some good occasion to remove from Cambridge to court ; God, in 
whom there is an unseen chain of causes, did in a short time put 
an end to the lives of two of his most obliging and most power- 
ful friends, Lodowick duke of Richmond 6 , and James marquis of 
Hamilton 7 ; and not long after him, king James 8 died also, and 
with them, all Mr. Herbert's court hopes : so that he presently 
betook himself to a retreat from London, to a friend in Kent, 
where he lived very privately, and was such a lover of solitariness 
as was judged to impair his health more than his study had done. 
In this manner of retirement he had many conflicts with himself, 
whether he should return to the painted pleasures of a court life, 
or betake himself to a study of divinity, and enter into sacred 
orders? (to which his dear mother had often persuaded him.) 
These were such conflicts as those only can know that have en- 
dured them ; for ambitious desires and the outward glory of this 
world are not easily laid aside; but at last God inclined him to 
put on a resolution to serve at his altar. 

He did at his return to London acquaint a court friend with 

6 Duke of Richmond.'] Died Feb. 16, 1624-5. 

7 Marquis of Hamilton.] Died March 3, 1624-5. 

8 King James.] Died March 27, 1625. 


his resolution to enter into sacred orders, who persuaded him to 
alter it, as too mean an employment 9 , and too much below his 
birth, and the excellent abilities and endowments of his mind. 
To whom he replied, " It hath been formerly judged that the 
domestic servants of the King of Heaven should be of the 
noblest families l on earth ; and though the iniquity of the late 
times have made clergymen meanly valued, and the sacred name 
of priest contemptible, yet I will labour to make it honourable, 
by consecrating all my learning, and all my poor abilities, to ad- 
vance the glory of that God that gave them ; knowing that I can 
never do too much for him that hath done so much for me as to 
make me a Christian. And I will labour to be like my Saviour, 
by making humility lovely in the eyes of all men, and by following 
the merciful and meek example of my dear Jesus." 

This was then his resolution, and the God of constancy, who 
intended him for a great example of virtue, continued him in it ; 
for within that year he was made deacon, but the day when, or 
by whom, I cannot learn ; but that he was about that time made 
deacon is most certain ; for I find by the records of Lincoln, 
that he was made prebend of Lay ton Ecclesia 2 , in the diocese of 
Lincoln, July 15, 1626, and that this prebend was given him by 
John 3 , then lord bishop of that see. And now he had a fit occa- 
sion to shew that piety and bounty that was derived from his 
generous mother and his other memorable ancestors; and the 
occasion was this. 

This Layton Ecclesia is a village near to Spalden 4 , in the county 
of Huntingdon, and the greatest part of the parish church was 
fallen down, and that of it which stood was so decayed, so little, 

9 Too mean an employment.'] "And for our author (The Sweet Singer of the 
Temple), though he was one of the most prudent and accomplished men of 
his time, I have heard sober men censure him, as a man that did not manage 
his brave parts to his best advantage and preferment, but lost himself in an 
humble way. That was the phrase, I well remember." Life of Mr. George 
Herbert by Barnabas Oley, prefixed to his Country Parson. 

1 Of the noblest families^ Compare Christian Institutes, vol. iii. p. 348 ; 
Barrow, and n. 

2 Layton Ecclesia.'] Leighton, in Huntingdonshire, five and a half miles 
N.E. of Kimbolton. Dr. Zouch confounds it with Leighton Buzzard, in 
Bedfordshire. Both places are attached to prebends in Lincoln. 

3 JohnJ] John Williams, afterwards archbishop of York. 

4 Spalden.'] Or rather, Spaldwick, about two miles from Leighton. Spal- 
den, or Spalding, is in Lincolnshire. 

c 2 


and so useless, that the parishioners could not meet to perform 
their duty to God in public prayer and praises ; and thus it had 
been for almost twenty years, in which time there had been some 
faint endeavours for a public collection to enable the parishioners 
to rebuild it, but with no success till Mr. Herbert undertook it ; 
and he, by his own, and the contribution of many of his kindred 
and other noble friends, undertook the re-edification of it, and 
made it so much his whole business, that he became restless till he 
saw it finished as it now stands 5 ; being, for the workmanship, a 
costly mosaic ; for the form, an exact cross ; and for the decency 
and beauty, I am assured it is the most remarkable parish church 
that this nation affords. He lived to see it so wainscoated as to 
be exceeded by none; and by his order the reading-pew and 
pulpit were a little distant from each other, and both of an equal 
height ; for he would often say, " They should neither have a 
precedency or priority of the other ; but that prayer and preach- 
ing, being equally useful, might agree like brethren, and have an 
equal honour and estimation/'* 

Before I proceed farther I must look back to the time of Mr. 
Herberts being made prebend, and tell the reader, that not long 
after, his mother being informed of his intentions to rebuild that 
church, and apprehending the great trouble and charge that he 
was like to draw upon himself, his relations, and friends before it 
could be finished, sent for him from London to Chelsea, (where 

she then dwelt,) and at his coming, said " George, I sent for 

you, to persuade you to commit simony, by giving your patron as 
good a gift as he has given to you ; namely, that you give him 
back his prebend ; for, George, it is not for your weak body and 
empty purse to undertake to build churches." Of which he de- 
sired he might have a day's time to consider, and then make her 
an answer. And at his return to her the next day, when he had 
first desired her blessing, and she had given it him, his next re- 
quest was, " That she would, at the age of thirty- three years, 
allow him to become an undutiful son, for he had made a vow to 
God, that if he were able he would rebuild that church." And 
then shewed her such reasons for his resolution, that she pre- 
sently subscribed to be one of his benefactors, and undertook to 
solicit William earl of Pembroke to become another, who sub- 

5 As it now stands."} A view of the church is given in Dr. Zouch's edition 
of Walton's Lives, ii. 54. 


scribed for fifty pounds ; and not long after, by a witty and per- 
suasive letter from Mr. Herbert, made it fifty pounds more. And 
in this nomination of some of his benefactors, James duke of 
Lenox 6 , and his brother sir Henry Herbert, ought to be remem- 
bered ; as also the bounty of Mr. Nicholas Farrer and Mr. Arthur 
Woodnot, the one a gentleman in the neighbourhood of Layton, 
and the other a goldsmith in Foster-lane, London, ought not to 
be forgotten ; for the memory of such men ought to outlive their 
lives. Of master Farrer I shall hereafter give an account in a 
more seasonable place ; but before I proceed farther I will give 
this short account of master Arthur Woodnot. 

He was a man that had considered overgrown estates do often 
require more care and watchfulness to preserve than get them ; 
and considered that there be many discontents that riches cure 
not ; and did therefore set limits to himself as to desire of wealth : 
and having attained so much as to be able to shew some mercy 
to the poor, and preserve a competence for himself, he dedicated 
the remaining part of his life to the service of God, and to be 
useful for his friends ; and he proved to be so to Mr. Herbert ; 
for, beside his own bounty, he collected and returned most of the 
money that was paid for the rebuilding of that church ; he kept 
all the account of the charges, and would often go down to state 
them, and see all the workmen paid. When I have said, that 
this good man was a useful friend to Mr. Herbert's father, and to 
his mother, and continued to be so to him till he closed his eyes 
on his death-bed, I will forbear to say more till I have the next 
fair occasion to mention the holy friendship that was betwixt him 

and Mr. Herbert. From whom Mr. Woodnot carried to his 

mother this following letter, and delivered it to her in a sickness 
which was not long before that which proved to be her last. 

A Letter of Mr. GEORGE HERBERT to Ms mother, in her sickness. 


At my last parting from you I was the better content, because 
I was in hope I should myself carry all sickness out of your 
family ; but since I know I did not, and that your share con- 
tinues, or rather increaseth, I wish earnestly that I were again 
with you : and would quickly make good my wish, but that my 

fl Duke of Lenox.'] Brother of Lodowick, duke of Richmond and Lenox, 
mentioned in p. 18. 


employment does fix me here, it being now but a month to our 
commencement ; wherein my absence by how much it naturally 
augmenteth suspicion, by so much shall it make my prayers the 
more constant and the more earnest for you to the God of all 

consolation In the mean time, I beseech you to be cheerful, 

and comfort yourself in the God of all comfort, who is not willing 

to behold any sorrow but for sin. What hath affliction 

grievous in it more than for a moment ? or why should our afflic- 
tions here have so much power or boldness as to oppose the hope 

of our joys hereafter ! Madam ! as the earth is but a point 

in respect of the heavens, so are earthly troubles compared to 
heavenly joys ; therefore, if either age or sickness lead you to 
those joys, consider what advantage you have over youth and 

health, who are now so near those two comforts. Your last 

letter gave me earthly preferment, and I hope kept heavenly for 
yourself: but would you divide and choose too? Our college 
customs allow not that, and I should account myself most happy 
if I might change with you ; for I have always observed the 
thread of life to be like other threads or skeins of silk, full of 
snarles and incumbrances : happy is he whose bottom is wound 

up and laid ready for use in the New Jerusalem. For myself, 

dear mother, I always feared sickness more than death, because 
sickness hath made me unable to perform those offices for which 
I came into the world, and must yet be kept in it ; but you are 
freed from that fear, who have already abundantly discharged 
that part, having both ordered your family, and so brought up 
your children that they have attained to the years of discretion, 
and competent maintenance. So that now if they do not well, 
the fault cannot be charged on you, whose example and care of 
them will justify you both to the world and your own conscience ; 
insomuch that whether you turn your thoughts on the life past or 
on the joys that are to come, you have strong preservatives 

against all disquiet. And for temporal afflictions, I beseech 

you consider all that can happen to you are either afflictions of 

estate, or body, or mind. For those of estate ; of what poor 

regard ought they to be, since if we had riches we are com- 
manded to give them away ? so that the best use of them is, 
having, not to have them. But perhaps being above the com- 
mon people, our credit and estimation calls on us to live in a 
more splendid fashion. But, God! how r;i>il\ i> that an- 
swered, when we consider that the blessings in the holy Scripture 


are never given to the rich but to the poor. I never find, Blessed 
be the rich, or Blessed be the noble ; but Blessed be the meek, 
and Blessed be the poor, and Blessed be the mourners, for they shall 

be comforted. And yet, God ! most carry themselves so as 

if they not only not desired, but even feared to be blessed. 

And for afflictions of the body, dear madam, remember the holy 
martyrs of God, how they have been burnt by thousands, and 
have endured such other tortures as the very mention of them 
might beget amazement ; but their fiery trials have had an end ; 
and yours (which praised be God are less) are not like to con- 
tinue long. 1 beseech you let such thoughts as these moderate 

your present fear and sorrow ; and know, that if any of your^s 
should prove a Goliath-like trouble, yet you may say with David, 
That God who hath delivered me out of the paws of the lion 
and bear will also deliver me out of the hands of this uncircumcised 

Philistine. Lastly, for those afflictions of the soul : consider 

that God intends that to be as a sacred temple for himself to 
dwell in, and will not allow any room there for such an inmate 

as grief, or allow that any sadness shall be his competitor. 

And above all, if any care of future things molest you, remember 
those admirable words of the psalmist : Cast thy care on the Lord, 
and he shall nourish tJiee. (Psal. 55.) To which join that of St. 
Peter, Casting all your care on the Lord, for he careth for you. 

(1 Pet. v. 7.) What an admirable thing is this, that God puts 

his shoulder to our burthen ! and entertains our care for us that 

we may the more quietly intend his service. To conclude, let 

me commend only one place more to you, (Philip, iv. 4.) St. 
Paul saith there, Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say 
Rejoice. He doubles it, to take away the scruple of those that 
might say, What, shall we rejoice in afflictions ? yes, I say again 
Rejoice ; so that it is not left to us to rejoice or not rejoice : but 
whatsoever befalls us we must always, at all times rejoice in the 
Lord, who taketh care for us : and it follows in the next verse : 
Let your moderation appear to all men, the Lord is at hand : be 
careful for nothing. What can be said more comfortably \ trou- 
ble not yourselves, God is at hand to deliver us from all or in all. 
Dear madam, pardon my boldness, and accept the good 
meaning of 

Your most obedient son, 

Trin. Coll. May 25, 1622. 


About the year 1629, and the 34th of his age, Mr. Herbert 
was seized with a sharp quotidian ague, and thought to remove it 
by the change of air ; to which end he went to Woodford, in 
Essex, but thither more chiefly to enjoy the company of his 
beloved brother, sir Henry Herbert, and other friends then of 
that family. In his house he remained about twelve months, and 
there became his own physician, and cured himself of his ague, 
by forbearing drink, and not eating any meat, no not mutton, 
nor a hen, or pigeon, unless they were salted ; and by such a 
constant diet he removed his ague, but with inconveniences that 
were worse ; for he brought upon himself a disposition to rheums 
and other weaknesses, and a supposed consumption. And it is 
to be noted, that in the sharpest of his extreme fits he would 
often say, u Lord, abate my great affliction, or increase my 
patience ; but, Lord, I repine not ; I am dumb, Lord, before 
thee, because thou doest it." By which, and a sanctified sub- 
mission to the will of God, he shewed he was inclinable to bear 
the sweet yoke of Christian discipline, both then, and in the 
latter part of his life, of which there will be many true testi- 

And now his care was to recover from his consumption by a 
change from Woodford into such an air as was most proper to 
that end. And his remove was to Dantsey, in Wiltshire, a 
noble house, which stands in a choice air ; the owner of it then 
was the lord Danvers 7 , earl of Danby, who loved Mr. Herbert so 
very much, that he allowed him such an apartment in it as might 
best suit with his accommodation and liking. And in this place, 
by a spare diet, declining all perplexing studies, moderate exercise, 
and a cheerful conversation, his health was apparently improved 
to a good degree of strength and cheerfulness : and then he 
declared his resolution both to marry and to enter into the sacred 
orders of priesthood. These had long been the desires of his 
mother and his other relations ; but she lived not to see either, 
for she died in the year 1627. And though he was disobedient 
to her about Layton church, yet, in conformity to her will, he 
kept his orator's place till after her death, and then presently 
(1(< lined it ; and the more willingly that he might be succeed' <! 

7 The lord Danvers.] Henry Danvers, created Lord Danvers of Dantsey, 
27th July, 1603, and earl of Danby in 1626. He was the founder of the 
Botanic Garden at Oxford. He died in 1643, when his titles became extinct. 
His brother was George Herbert's stepfather, see p. 8. 


by his friend Robert Creighton, who is now Dr. Creighton, and 
the worthy bishop of Wells. 

I shall now proceed to his marriage ; in order to which it will 
be convenient that I first give the reader a short view of his 
person, and then an account of his wife, and of some circumstances 
concerning both. He was for his person of a stature inclining 
towards tallness ; his body was very straight and so far from 
being cumbered with too much flesh, that he was lean to an 
extremity. His aspect was cheerful, arid his speech and motion 
did both declare him a gentleman, for they were all so meek and 
obliging that they purchased love and respect from all that knew 

These, and his other visible virtues, begot him much love from 
a gentleman of a noble fortune, and a near kinsman to his friend 
the earl of Danby ; namely, from Mr. Charles Danvers, of 
Bainton, in the county of Wilts, esq. This Mr. Danvers, having 
known him long and familiarly, did so much affect him, that he 
often and publicly declared a desire that Mr. Herbert would 
marry any of his nine daughters (for he had so many) but rather 
his daughter Jane than any other, because Jane was his beloved 
daughter. And he had often said the same to Mr. Herbert 
himself ; and that if he could like her for a wife, and she him for 
a husband, Jane should have a double blessing : and Mr. Danvers 
had so often said the like to Jane, and so much commended 
Mr. Herbert to her, that Jane became so much a Platonic as to 
fall in love with Mr. Herbert unseen. 

This was a fair preparation for a marriage ; but, alas ! her 
father died before Mr. Herbert's retirement to Dantsey; yet 
some friends to both parties procured their meeting, at which 
time a mutual affection entered into both their hearts, as a 
conqueror enters into a surprised city ; and love having got such 
possession, governed, and made there such laws and resolu- 
tions as neither party was able to resist; insomuch that she 
changed her name into Herbert the third day after this first 

This haste might in others be thought a love-phrensy, or worse ; 
but it was not ; for they had wooed so like princes as to have 
select proxies : such as were true friends to both parties, such as 
well understood Mr. Herbert's and her temper of mind, and also 
their estate so well before this interview, that the suddenness 
was justifiable by the strictest rules of prudence ; and the more, 


because it proved so happy to both parties ; for the eternal lover 
of mankind made them happy in each other's mutual and equal 
affections and compliance ; indeed so happy that there never was 
any opposition betwixt them, unless it were a contest which 
should most incline to a compliance with the other's desires. 
And though this begot and continued in them such a mutual 
love, and joy, and content, as was no way defective ; yet this 
mutual content, and love, and joy, did receive a daily augmenta- 
tion by such daily obligingness to each other as still added such 
new affluences to the former fulness of these divine souls as was 
only improvable in heaven, where they now enjoy it. 

About three months after his marriage, Dr. Curie, who was 
then rector of Bemerton, in Wiltshire, was made bishop of Bath 
and Wells, (and not long after translated to Winchester,) and 
by that means the presentation of a clerk to Bemerton did not 
fall to the earl of Pembroke, (who was the undoubted patron of 
it,) but to the king, by reason of Dr. Curie's advancement: but 
Philip 8 , then earl of Pembroke, (for William was lately dead ',) 
requested the king to bestow it upon his kinsman George Herbert ; 
and the king said, " Most willingly to Mr. Herbert, if it be 
worth his acceptance :" and the earl as willingly and suddenly 
sent it to him without seeking. But though Mr. Herbert had 
put on a resolution for the clergy, yet, at receiving this presenta- 
tion, the apprehension of the last great account that he was to 
make for the cure of so many souls made him fast and pray often, 
and consider for not less than a month ; in which time he had 
some resolutions to decline both the priesthood and that living. 
And in this time of considering, "He endured" (as he would 
often say) " such spiritual conflicts as none can think but only 
those that have endured them." 

In the midst of these conflicts, his old and dear friend Mr. 
Arthur Woodnot took a journey to salute him at Bainton (where 
he then was with his wife's friends and relations), and was joyful 
to be an eye-witness of his health, and happy marriage. And 
after they had rejoiced together some few days, they took 
journey to Wilton, the famous seat of the earls of Pembroke ; at 
which time the king, the earl, and the whole court were thT<>. 
or at Salisbury, which is near to it. And at this time Mr. 

" Philip.] A great favourite of James, who had previously created him earl 
of Montgomery. 
9 Lately dead.] 10th April, 1630. 


Herbert presented his thanks to the earl, for his presentation to 
Bemerton, but had not yet resolved to accept it, and told him 
the reason why ; but that night, the earl acquainted Dr. Laud, 
then bishop of London, and after archbishop of Canterbury, with 
his kinsman's irresolution. And the bishop did the next day so 
convince Mr. Herbert that the refusal of it was a sin ; that a 
taylor was sent for to come speedily from Salisbury to Wilton, 
to take measure, and make him canonical cloaths, against next 
day : which the taylor did ; and Mr. Herbert being so habited, 
went with his presentation to the learned Dr. Davenant, who 
was then bishop of Salisbury, and he gave him institution imme- 
diately (for Mr. Herbert had been made deacon some years 
before), and he was also the same day (which was April 26, 
1630) inducted into the good and more pleasant than healthful 
parsonage of Bemerton : which is a mile from Salisbury. 

I have now brought him to the parsonage of Bemerton, and to 
the thirty-sixth year of his age, and must stop here, and bespeak 
the reader to prepare for an almost incredible story of the great 
sanctity of the short remainder of his holy life ; a life so full of 
charity, humility, and all Christian virtues, that it deserves the 
eloquence of St. Chrysostom to commend and declare it ! A 
life that if it were related by a pen like his, there would then 
be no need for this age to look back into times past for the 
examples of primitive piety : for, they might be all found in the 
life of George Herbert. But now, alas ! who is fit to undertake 
it ! I confess I am not : and am not pleased with myself that I 
must ; and profess myself amazed, when I consider how few of 
the clergy lived like him then, and how many live so unlike him 
now. But, it becomes not me to censure : my design is rather 
to assure the reader, that I have used very great diligence to 
inform myself, that I might inform him of the truth of what 
follows ; and though I cannot adorn it with eloquence, yet I 
will do it with sincerity. 

When at his induction he was shut into Bemerton church, 
being left there alone to toll the bell, (as the law requires him :) 
he staid so much longer than an ordinary time, before he returned 
to those friends that staid expecting him at the church-door, 
that his friend Mr. Woodnot looked in at the church-window, 
and saw him lie prostrate on the ground before the altar : at 
which time and place (as he after told Mr. Woodnot) he set 


some rules to himself, for the future manage of his life ; and then 
and there made a vow, to labour to keep them. 

And the same night that he had his induction, he said to Mr. 
Woodnot, " I now look back upon my aspiring thoughts, and 
think myself more happy than if I had attained what then I so 
ambitiously thirsted for. And, I can now behold the court 
with an impartial eye, and see plainly, that it is made up of 
frauds and titles, and flattery, and many other such empty, 
imaginary, painted pleasures : pleasures, that are so empty, as 
not to satisfy when they are enjoyed; but, in God and his 
service, is a fulness of all joy and pleasure, and no satiety. And 
I will now use all my endeavours to bring my relations and 
dependants to a love and reliance on him, who never fails those 
that trust him. But above all, I will be sure to live well, because 
the virtuous life of a clergyman is the most powerful eloquence to 
persuade all that see it to reverence and love, and at least, to 
desire to live like him. And this I will do, because I know we 
live in an age that hath more need of good examples, than 
precepts. And I beseech that God, who hath honoured me so 
much as to call me to serve him at his altar, that as by his 
special grace he hath put into my heart these good desires, and 
resolutions; so, he will by his assisting grace give me ghostly 
strength to bring the same to good effect. And I beseech him 
that my humble and charitable life may so win upon others, as to 
bring glory to my Jesus, whom I have this day taken to be my 
master and governor ; and I am so proud of his service, that I 
will always observe, and obey, and do his will ; and always call 
him Jesus my master 1 ; and I will always contemn my birth, or 
any title or dignity that can be conferred upon me, when I shall 
compare them with my title of being a priest, and serving at the 
altar of Jesus my master." 

And that he did so, may appear in many parts of his book of 
Sacred 1'oL-ms; especially in that which he calls the Odour. In 

1 Jesus my master.'] " To testify his independency upon all others, and to 
quicken his diligence, he used in his ordinary speech, when he made mention 
of the blessed name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, to add, My 
Master.'' Printer's Preface to The Temple, or Sacred Poems, &c. 

1 1 is motto, with which he used to conclude all things that might seem to 
end any way to his own honour, was, 

" Lets than the least of God's mercies." Ibid. 


which he seems to rejoice in the thoughts of that word Jesus, and 
say that the adding these words my master to it, and the often 
repetition of them, seemed to perfume his mind, and leave an 
oriental fragrancy in his very breath. And for his unforced 
choice to serve at God's altar, he seems in another place of his 
poems (the Pearl, Matth. xiii.) to rejoice and say " He knew 
the ways of learning ; knew, what nature does willingly ; and 
what when it is forced by fire : knew the ways of honour, and 
when glory inclines the soul to noble expressions : knew the 
court : knew the ways of pleasure, of love, of wit, of music, and 
upon what terms he declined all these for the service of his 
master Jesus," and then concludes, saying, 

" That, through these labyrinths, not my groveling wit, 
But, thy silk-twist, let down from heaven to me, 
Did, both conduct, and teach me, how by it, 
To climb to thee." 

The third day after he was made rector of Bemerton, and had 
changed his sword and silk cloathes into a canonical coat, he 
returned so habited with his friend Mr. Woodnot to Bainton : 
and, immediately after he had seen and saluted his wife, he said 
to her " You are now a minister's wife, and must now so far 
forget your father's house, as not to claim a precedence of any of 
your parishioners ; for you are to know, that a priest's wife can 
challenge no precedence or place, but that which she purchases 
by her obliging humility ; and, I am sure, places so purchased 
do best become them. And, let me tell you, that I am so good 
a herald as to assure you that this is truth." And she was so 
meek a wife, "as to assure him that it was no vexing news to 
her, and that he should see her observe it with a chearful willing- 
ness." And indeed her unforced humility, that humility that was 
in her so original as to be born with her ! made her so happy as 
to do so ; and her doing so begot her an unfeigned love, and a 
serviceable respect from all that conversed with her ; and this 
love followed her in all places, as inseparably, as shadows follow 
substances in sun-shine. 

It was not many days before he returned back to Bemerton, 
to view the church, and repair the chancel ; and indeed, to re- 
build almost three parts of his house which was fallen down, or 
decayed by reason of his predecessor's living at a better parsonage- 


house ; namely, at Minal, sixteen or twenty miles from this place. 
At which time of Mr. Herberts coming alone to Bemerton, there 
came to him a poor old woman, with an intent to acquaint him 
with her necessitous condition, as also with some troubles of her 
mind ; but after she had spoke some few words to him, she was 
surprised with a fear, and that begot a shortness of breath, so 
that her spirits and speech failed her ; which he perceiving, did so 
compassionate her, and was so humble, that he took her by the 
hand, and said, " Speak, good mother, be not afraid to speak to 
me ; for I am a man that will hear you with patience ! and will 
relieve your necessities too, if I be able : and this I will do wil- 
lingly, and therefore, mother, be not afraid to acquaint me with 
what you desire." After which comfortable speech, he again took 
her by the hand, made her sit down by him, and understanding 
she was of his parish, he told her, " He would be acquainted 
with her, and take her into his care :" and having with patience 
heard and understood her wants (and it is some relief for a poor 
body to be but heard with patience) he like a Christian clergyman 
comforted her by his meek behaviour and counsel : but because 
that cost him nothing, he relieved her with money too, and so 
sent her home with a chearful heart, praising God, and praying 
for him. Thus worthy, and (like David's blessed man) thus lowly, 
was Mr. George Herbert in his own eyes : and thus lovely in the 
eyes of others. 

At his return that night to his wife at Bainton, he gave her an 
account of the passages betwixt him and the poor woman ; with 
which she was so affected, that she went next day to Salisbury, 
and there bought a pair of blankets and sent them as a token of 
her love to the poor woman : and with them a message, " That 
she would see and be acquainted with her, when her house was 
built at Bemerton." 

There be many such passages both of him and his wife, of 
which some few will be related ; but I shall first tell, that he 
hasted to get the parish church repaired ; then to beautify the 
chapel (which stands near his house) and that at his own great 
charge. He then proceeded to re -build the greatest part of the 
parsonage-house, which he did also very compleatly, and at his 
own charge ; and having done this good work, he caused these 
verses to be writ upon it. or engraven in the mantle of the chim- 
ney in his hall. 


" To my successor. 

" If thou chance for to find 
A new house to thy mind, 

And built without thy cost : 
Be good to the poor, 
As God gives thee store, 

And then my labour's not lost." 

We will now by the reader's favour suppose him fixed at Be- 
merton, and grant him to have seen the church repaired, and the 
chapel belonging to it very decently adorned, at his own great 
charge (which is a real truth), and having now fixed him there, I 
shall proceed to give an account of the rest of his behaviour both 
to his parishioners, and those many others that knew and 
conversed with him. 

Doubtless Mr. Herbert had considered and given rules to him- 
self for his Christian carriage both to God and man, before he 
entered into holy orders. And it is not unlike, but that he 
renewed those resolutions at his prostration before the holy altar, 
at his induction into the church at Bemerton ; but as yet he was 
but a deacon, and therefore longed for the next ember-week, that 
he might be ordained priest, and made capable of administering 
both the sacraments. At which time, the reverend doctor 
Humphrey Hinchman, now lord bishop of London (who does not 
mention him, but with some veneration for his life and excellent 
learning,) tells me, " He laid his hand on Mr. Herbert's head, 
and (alas !) within less than three years, lent his shoulder to carry 
his dear friend to his grave." 

And that Mr. Herbert might the better preserve those holy 
rules which such a priest as he intended to be, ought to observe ; 
and, that time might not insensibly blot them out of his memory, 
but that the next year might shew him his variations from this 
year's resolutions ; he therefore did set down his rules, then 
resolved upon, in that order, as the world now sees them printed 
in a little book called, The Country Parson, in which some of his 
rules are : 

The Parson's Knowledge. 

The Parson on Sundays. 

The Parson Praying. 

The Parson Preaching. 

The Parson's Charity. 


The Parson comforting the Sick. 

The Parson Arguing. 

The Parson Condescending. 

The Parson in his Journey. 

The Parson in his Mirth. 

The Parson with his Churchwardens. 

The Parson blessing the People. 

And his behaviour toward God and man may be said to be a 
practical comment on these, and the other holy rules set down in 
that useful book. A book, so full of plain, prudent and useful 
rules, that that country parson, that can spare twelve pence and 
yet wants it, is scarce excusable ; because it will both direct him 
what he ought to do, and convince him for not having done it. 

At the death of Mr. Herbert, this book fell into the hands 
of his friend Mr. Woodnot ; and he commended it into the 
trusty hands of Mr. Barnabas Oly, who published it 3 with a most 
conscientious, and excellent preface ; from which I have had some 
of those truths, that are related in this life of Mr. Herbert. 
The text for his first sermon was taken out of Solomons Proverbs, 
and the words were, Keep thy heart with all diligence. In which 
first sermon, he gave his parishioners many necessary, holy, safe 
rules for the discharge of a good conscience, both to God and man. 
And delivered his sermon after a most florid manner ; both with 
great learning and eloquence. But at the close of this sermon, 
told them, " That should not be his constant way of preaching ; 
for, since almighty God does not intend to lead men to heaven by 
hard questions, he would not therefore fill their heads with unne- 
cessary notions ; but, that for their sakes, his language and his 
expressions should be more plain and practical in his future ser- 

2 Who published it.'} The Country Parson has been lately reprinted at the 
Clarendon Press, by the University of Oxford, in a volume intitled The Cler- 
gyman's Instructor; which contains also Bishop Burnet's Pastoral Care, 
Bishop Bull's Directions to Candidates for Holy Orders, and some other 
excellent tracts on the ministerial duties ; the whole forming a very valuable 
addition to the highly important services which have recently been rendered 
by that University to the cause of religion, and of the Church of England in 
particular, by the republication of a collection of works of our English 
divines, for the use of the younger clergy, and students in theology. The 
collection comprises the Homilies, Hooker's Works, Pearson on the Creed, 
Stillingfleet's Origines Sacra, Barrow's Works, Walton's Lives, Wheatly on 
the Common Prayer, &c. &c. 


mons." And he then made it his humble request, that they 
would be constant to the afternoon's service, and catechising. 
And shewed them convincing reasons why he desired it ; and his 
obliging example and persuasions brought them to a willing con- 
formity to his desires. 

The texts for all his future sermons (which God knows were 
not many) were constantly taken out of the gospel for the day ; 
and he did as constantly declare why the church did appoint that 
portion of Scripture to be that day read : and in what manner 
the collect for every Sunday does refer to the gospel, or to the 
epistle then read to them ; and, that they might pray with under- 
standing, he did usually take occasion to explain, not only the 
collect for every particular Sunday, but the reasons of all the 
other collects and responses in our church-service ; and made it 
appear to them, that the whole service of the church was a rea- 
sonable, and therefore an acceptable sacrifice to God ; as namely, 
that we begin with confession of ourselves to be vile, miserable 
sinners: and that we begin so, because till we have confessed 
ourselves to be such, we are not capable of that mercy which 
we acknowledge we need, and pray for : but having in the prayer 
of our Lord, begged pardon for those sins which we have confest ; 
and hoping that as the priest hath declared our absolution, so by 
our public confession, and real repentance, we have obtained that 
pardon ; then we dare and do proceed to beg of the Lord, to open 
our lips, that our mouths may shew forth his praise ; for till then, 
we are neither able nor worthy to praise him. But this being 
supposed, we are then fit to say, Glory be to the Father, and to the 
Son, and to the Holy Ghost ; and fit to proceed to a further service 
of our God, in the collects, and psalms, and lauds that follow in 
the service. 

And as to these psalms and lauds, he proceeded to inform them, 
why they were so often, and some of them daily repeated in our 
church-service : namely, the psalms every month, because they be 
an historical and thankful repetition of mercies past ; and such a 
composition of prayers and praises, as ought to be repeated often, 
and publickly; for with such sacrifices, God is honoured, and 
well-pleased. This for the psalms. 

And for the hymns and lauds, appointed to be daily repeated 
or sung after the first and second lessons are read to the congre- 
gation ; he proceeded to inform them, that it was most reason- 
able, after they have heard the will and goodness of God declared 



or preached by the priest in his reading the two chapters, that it 
was then a seasonable duty to rise up and express their gratitude 
to almighty God for those his mercies to them, and to all man- 
kind ; and then to say with the blessed Virgin, That their souls 
do magnify the Lord, and that their spirits do also rejoice in God 
tlwir Saviour. And that it was their duty also to rejoice with 
Simeon in his song, and say with him, That their eyes have also 
seen their salvation ; for, they have seen that salvation which was 
but prophesyed till his time : and he then broke out into those 
expressions of joy that he did see it, but, they live to see it 
daily, in the history of it, and therefore ought daily to rejoice, 
and daily to offer up their sacrifices of praise to their God, for 
that particular mercy. A service, which is now the constant em- 
ployment of that blessed Virgin, and Simeon, and all those 
blessed saints that are possest of heaven : and, where they are at 
this time interchangeably, and constantly singing, Holy, holy, holy 

Lord God, glory be to God on high, and on earth peace. And he 

taught them, that to do this was an acceptable service to God, 
because the prophet David says in his psalms, He that praiseth 1l<> 
Lord, hwoureth him. 

He made them to understand, how happy they be that are 
freed from the incumbrances of that law which our fore-fathers 
groaned under ; namely, from the legal sacrifices, and from the 
many ceremonies of the Levitical law ; freed from circumcision, 
and from the strict observation of the Jewish Sabbath, and the 
like : and he made them know, that having received so many, 
and so great blessings, by being born since the days of our Sa- 
viour, it must be an acceptable sacrifice to almighty God, for 
them to acknowledge those blessings daily, and stand up and wor- 
ship, and say as Zacharias did, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, 
for he linlli (in our days) visited and redeemed his people; and (he 
hath in our days) remembered, and shewed that mercy which by the 
mouth of tlie prophets lie promised to our forefathers : and this he 
hath done, according to his holy covenant made with them. And 
h< made them to understand that we live to see and enjoy the 
benefit of it, in his birth, in his life, in his passion, his resurrec- 
tion and ascension into heaven, where he now sits sensible of all 
our temptations and infirmities; and where lie is at this present 
time making intercession for us. to his, and our Father: and 
therefore they ought daily to express their public gratulutimis. 
and say daily with /;. >/ //, ///,// A//,-// God of I* 


that hath thus visited, and thus redeemed his people. These were 

some of the reasons by which Mr. Herbert instructed his congre- 
gation for the use of the psalms, and the hymns appointed to be 
daily sung or said in the church-service. 

He informed them also, when the priest did pray only for the 
congregation, and not for himself; and when they did only pray 
for him, as namely, after the repetition of the creed, before he 
proceeds to pray the Lord's prayer, or any of the appointed col- 
lects, the priest is directed to kneel down, and pray for them, 

saying The Lord be with you And when they pray for 

him, saying And with thy spirit ; and then they join together 

in the following collects ; and he assured them, that when there 
is such mutual love, and such joint prayers offered for each other, 
then the holy angels look down from heaven, and are ready to 
carry such charitable desires to God almighty ; and he as ready 
to receive them ; and that a Christian congregation calling thus 
upon God, with one heart, and one voice, and in one reverend and 
humble posture, look as beautifully as Jerusalem, that is at peace 
with itself. 

He instructed them also, why the prayer of our Lord was 
prayed often 3 in every full service of the church ; namely, at the 

3 Why the prayer of our Lord was prayed oftenJ] " Marvel not that I use 
at the sermons end to make prayer, for I do it not of singularitie : but when 
I am at home, and in the countrey where I goe, sometime when the poore 
people come and aske it me, I appose them my selfe, or cause my servant to 
appose them of the Lordes Prayer, and they aunswere some, ' I can my 
Latin Pater noster;' some, ' I can the old Pater noster, but not the new.' 
Therefore, that all that can it not may learne, I use before the Sermon and 
after to say it. Wherefore now I beseeche you let us say it together ; Our 
Father whiche art in heaven, fyc." Latimer's Sermons, fol. 100, edit. 1584. 
Calvin " ever concluded his prayer before or after sermon with repeating of 
the Creed and Lord's Prayer, conceiving it to be of good use to have these 
often sounding in the ears of the people, as Beza tells us in writing his life." 
Bernard's Life of Archbishop Usher, p. 84. " It is no wonder you are 
thought a legal preacher " (says Mr. Clark, in a letter to Dr. Doddridge, 
when a young man) " when you have the ten commandments painted on the 
walls of your chappel : besides, you have a clerk, it seems, so impertinent as 
to say Amen, with an audible voice. O tempora ! mores I that such a rag 
of popery should ever be tolerated in a congregation of protestant dissen- 
ters : and to conclude all, you, the minister, conclude your prayers with a 
form called the Lord's Prayer. It may be you are surprised what this means. 
In a few words then, Mr. Chandler of Bedford, being on his return home, at 
Mr. Eccles's, desired him upon my motion to write to Hertford, to recom- 
mend you to them in his name, as a very fit man to be their minister. Upon 



conclusion of the several parts of that service ; and prayed then, 
not only because it was composed, and commanded by our Jesus 
that made it, but as a perfect pattern for our less perfect forms 
of prayer, and therefore fittest to sum up and conclude all our 
imperfect petitions. 

He instructed them also, that as by the second commandment 
we are required, not to bow down, or worship an idol, or false 
god ; so by the contrary rule, we are to bow down and kneel, or 
stand up and worship the true God. And he instructed them, 
why the church required the congregation to stand up at the 
repetition of the creeds ; namely, because they did thereby de- 
clare both their obedience to the church, and an assent to that 
faith into which they had been baptized. And he taught them, 
that in that shorter creed or doxology so often repeated daily, 
they also stood up to testify their belief 4 to be, that the God that 
they trusted in was one God, and three persons ; the Father, the 
Son, and the Holy Ghost ; to whom they and the priest gave glory : 
and because there had been heretics that had denyed some of 
these three persons to be God, therefore the congregation stood 

this, two members of that congregation went the other day to Kibworth to 
hear you preach : but no sooner did they come into the place but they found 
themselves disappointed : and what they heard at the close confirmed them 
so much in their prejudices, that they thought it needless to say any thing 
of their intention to you. Going to preach last Sunday at Ware, I heard 
all this there; and afterwards at Hertford." Letters to and from Dr. Dod- 
dridge, p. 14. 

4 To testify their belief.'] " I know a minister " (says Fuller in his Church 
History, speaking of the times when the liturgy was forbidden by an ordi- 
nance of the parliament, and the presbyterian directory was established) " I 
know a minister who was accused for using the Gloria Patri (conforming his 
practice to the directorie in all things else,) and threatened to be brought to 
the committee. He pleaded the words of Mr. Cartwright in his defence, 
'confessing* (Reply against IVhitgift, p. 107, sect. 4.) 'the gloria Patri 
founded on just cause, that men might make their open profession in the 
church of the divinity of the Son of God, against the detestable opinion of 
Arius and his disciples. But now (saith he) that it hath pleased the Lord 
to quench that fire, there is no such cause why those things should be 
used.' But seeing (said the minister) it hath pleased God for our sins to 
condemn us to live in so licentious an age, wherein the divinity both of 
('hrist and the Holy Ghost is called frequently and publickly into question, 
the same now (by Mr. Cartwright's judgment) may lawfully be used, not to 
say cannot well be omitted. I remember not that he heard any more of the 
matter." Church History of Britain, Cent. 17, p. 224. Compare Hooker's 
Ecclesiastical Polity, book r>, c. 42. 


up and honoured him, by confessing, and saying, It was so in the 
beginning, is now so, and shall ever be so world without end. And 
all gave their assent to this belief, by standing up and saying, 

He -instructed them also, what benefit they had by the church's 
appointing the celebration of holidays 5 , and the excellent use of 
them ; namely, that they were set apart for particular commemora- 
tions of particular mercies received from almighty God ; and (as 
reverend Mr. Hooker says) to be the land-marks to distinguish 
times ; for by them we are taught to take notice how time passes 
by us ; and, that we ought not to let the years pass without a ce- 
lebration of praise for those mercies which those days give us oc- 
casion to remember; and therefore they were to note that the year 
is appointed to begin 6 the 25th day of March ; a day in which we 
commemorate the angePs appearing to the blessed Virgin, with 
the joyful tidings that she should conceive and bear a son, that 
should be the redeemer of mankind ; and she did so forty weeks 
after this joyful salutation ; namely, at our Christmas : a day in 
which we commemorate his birth, with joy and praise ; and that 

6 Celebration of holidays.'] "In the year 1643, the ministers of the city of 
London met together to consult whether they should preach on the Christ- 
mas-day following, as they had been wont to do, or take no notice at all of 
the day. One of them, whom I shall not name, of great authority amongst 
them, was against their preaching, and was very near prevailing with the rest 
of his brethren to forbear. Our author " (Dr. John Lightfoot) " was at that 
meeting (being at that time minister at St. Bartholomew's aforesaid), who 
was so far from consenting to the advice of that person who gave it, that he 
took him aside, and argued the point with him ; and did not only maintain 
the lawfulness of the thing in question, but the expedience of it also : and 
shewed that the omitting it would be of dangerous consequence, and would 
reflect very much upon those men who made profession of no other design 
but reforming what was culpable and faulty. In a word, he so far prevailed 
with the company, that when it was put to the question, it was carried in the 
affirmative, and there were not above four or five of the whole who dissented." 
Strype's Life of Lightfoot, prefixed to his works, p. 3. See also Hooker's 
Ecclesiastical Polity, book 5, c. 69. The first distaste of the celebration of 
holy-days in the church of England, was contracted at Geneva. See Good- 
man's How to obey, A.D. 1558, p. 158. 

f) Appointed to beain.~\ " I shall observe (though perhaps every body 
knows it), that we use two different computations in this nation, viz. the 
common or Julian, which begins the year on the first day of January ; and 
the ecclesiastical, which begins the year on the twenty-fifth of March." Ben- 
net's Essay on the Thirty-nine Articles, p. 247. On this subject see the note 
at vol. ii. pp. 491, 492. 


eight days after this happy birth, we celebrate his circumcision ; 
namely, that day which we call New-year's day. And that upon 
that day which we call Twelfth-day, we commemorate the mani- 
festation of the unsearchable riches of Jesus to the Gentiles : and 
that that day we also celebrate the memory of his goodness in 
sending a star to guide the three wise men from the east to 
Bethlem, that they might there worship, and present him \\ith 
their oblations of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And he (Mr. 
Herbert) instructed them, that Jesus was, forty days after his 
birth, presented by his blessed mother in the temple ; namely, 
on that day which we call the purification of the blessed virgin, 
saint Mary. And he instructed them, that by the lent-fast, we 
imitate and commemorate our Saviour's humiliation in fasting 
forty days ; and, that we ought to endeavour to be like him in 
purity. And, that on Good-friday, we commemorate and con- 
dole his crucifixion. And, at Easter, commemorate his glorious 
resurrection. And he taught them, that after Jesus had mani- 
fested himself to his disciples, to be that Christ that was crucified, 
dead and buried; and by his appearing and conversing with lii.s 
disciples for the space of forty days after his resurrection, he then, 
and not till then, ascended into heaven, in the sight of those disci- 
ples ; namely, on that day which we call the ascension, or Holy 
Thursday. And that we then celebrate the performance of the 
promise which he made to his disciples, at or before his ascension ; 
namely, that though he left them, yet he would send them the Holy 
Ghost to be their comforter ; and that he did so on that day which 

the church calls Whitsunday. Thus the church keeps an 

historical and circular commemoration of times, as they pass by 
us ; of such times, as ought to incline us to occasional praises, 
for the particular blessings which we do, or might receive by 
those holy commemorations. 

He made them know also, why the church hath appointed 
ember-weeks ; and, to know the reason why the commandments, 
and the epistles and gospels were to be read at the altar, or com- 
munion table : why the priest was to pray the litany kneeling ; 
and, why to pray some collects standing ; and he gave them many 
other observations, fit for his plain congregation, but not fit for 
me now to mention ; for, I must set limits to my pen, and not 
make that a treatise, which I intended to be a much shorter 
account than I have made it. But I have done, when I have 
told the reader that lie was constant in catechising every Sunday 


in the afternoon, and that his catechising was after the second 
lesson, and in the pulpit, and that he never exceeded his half 
hour, and was always so happy as to have an obedient, and a full 

And, to this I must add, that if he were at any time too 
zealous in his sermons, it was, in reproving the indecencies of the 
peopled behaviour, in the time of divine service ; and of those 
ministers that huddled up the church-prayers, without a visible 
reverence and affection; namely, such as seemed to say the 
Lord's prayer, or a collect, in a breath ; but for himself, his 
custom was. to stop betwixt every collect, and give the people 
time to consider what they had prayed, and to force their 
desires affectionately to God, before he engaged them into new 

And by this account of his diligence, to make his parishioners 
understand what they prayed, and why they praised, and adored 
their Creator, I hope I shall the more easily obtain the reader's 
belief to the following account of Mr. Herbert's own practice, 
which was, to appear constantly with his wife, and three nieces 
(the daughters of a deceased sister) and his whole family, twice 
every day at the church-prayers, in the chapel which does almost 
join to his parsonage-house. And for the time of his appearing, 
it was strictly at the canonical hours of ten and four ; and then 
and there he lifted up pure and charitable hands to God in the 
midst of the congregation. And he would joy to have spent that 
time in that place, where the honour of his master Jesus dwelleth ; 
and there, by that inward devotion which he testified constantly 
by an humble behaviour, and visible adoration, he, like Joshua, 
brought not only Ms own /household thus to serve the Lord ; but 
brought most of his parishioners, and many gentlemen in the 
neighbourhood, constantly to make a part of his congregation 
twice a day. And some of the meaner sort of his parish, did so 
love and reverence Mr. Herbert, that they would let their plough 
rest when Mr. Herbert's saint's-bell rung to prayers, that they 
might also offer their devotions to God with him : arid would 
then return back to their plough. And his most holy life was 
such, that it begot such reverence to God, and to him, that they 
thought themselves the happier, when they carried Mr. Herbert's 

blessing back with them to their labour. Thus powerful was 

his reason, and example, to persuade others to a practical piety 
and devotion. 

And his constant public prayers did never make him to neglect 


his own private devotions, nor those prayers that he thought him- 
self bound to perform with his family, which always were a set 
form, and not long ; and he did always conclude them with that 
collect which the church hath appointed for the day or week. 
Thus he made every day's sanctity a step towards that kingdom 
where impurity cannot enter. 

His chiefest recreation was music, in which heavenly art he was 
a most excellent master, and did himself compose many divine 
hymns and anthems, which he set and sung to his lute or viol ; 
and, though he was a lover of retiredness, yet his love to music 
was such, that he went usually twice every week on certain 
appointed days, to the cathedral church in Salisbury ; and at his 
return would say, " That his time spent in prayer, and cathedral 
music 7 , elevated his soul, and was his heaven upon earth." But 
before his return thence to Bemerton, he would usually sing and 
play his part, at an appointed private music-meeting; and, to 
justify this practice, he would often say, " Religion does not 
banish mirth, but only moderates, and sets rules to it." 

And, as his desire to enjoy his heaven upon earth drew him 
twice every week to Salisbury, so his walks thither were the 
occasion of many happy accidents to others : of which, I will 
mention some few. 

In one of his walks to Salisbury, he overtook a gentleman that 
is still living in that city, and in their walk together, Mr. Her- 
bert took a fair occasion to talk with him, and humbly begged to 
be excused, if he asked him some account of his faith, and said, 
" I do this the rather, because though you are not of my parish, 
yet I receive tythe from you by the hand of your tenant ; and, 
sir, I am the bolder to do it, because I know there be some 
sermon-hearers that be like those fishes, that always live in salt 
water, and*yet are always fresh." 

After which expression, Mr. Herbert asked him some needful 
questions, and having received his answer, gave him such rules 
for the trial of his sincerity, and for a practical piety, and in so 
loving and meek a manner, that the gentleman did so fall in love 
with him, and his discourse, that he would often contrive to 
meet him in his walk to Salisbury, or to attend him back to 
Bemerton ; and still mentions the name of Mr. George Herbert 
with veneration, and still praiseth God for the occasion of 
Knowing him. 

1 Cathedral music.'] See above, vol. i. p. 314, note. 


In another of his Salisbury walks, he met with a neighbour 
minister, and after some friendly discourse betwixt them, and 
some condolement for the decay of piety, and too general contempt 
of the clergy, Mr. Herbert took occasion to say, 

" One cure for these distempers, would be for the clergy 
themselves to keep the ember-weeks 8 strictly, and beg of their 
parishioners to join with them in fasting and prayers for a more 
religious clergy. 

"And another cure would be, for themselves to restore the 
great and neglected duty of catechizing 9 , on which the salvation 
of so many of the poor and ignorant lay-people does depend ; but 
principally, that the clergy themselves would be sure to live 
unblameably ; and that the dignified clergy especially, which 
preach temperance, would avoid surfeiting, and take all occasions 
to express a visible humility, and charity in their lives ; for this 
would force a love and an imitation, and an unfeigned reverence 
from all that knew them to be such." (And for proof of this, we 
need no other testimony, than the life and death of Dr. Lake *, 
late lord bishop of Bath and Wells.) "This" (said Mr. Her- 
bert) " would be a cure for the wickedness and growing atheism 
of our age. And, my dear brother, till this be done by us, and 
done in earnest, let no man expect a reformation of the manners 
of the laity : for it is not learning, but this, this only, that must 
do it ; and till then, the fault must lie at our doors." 

In another walk to Salisbury, he saw a poor man, with a 
poorer horse, that was fallen under his load. They were both in 
distress, and needed present help ; which Mr. Herbert perceiving, 
put off his canonical coat, and helped the poor man to unload, and 
after, to load his horse. The poor man blest him for it ; and he 
blest the poor man ; and was so like the good Samaritan, that he 
gave him money to refresh both himself and his horse ; and told 
him, " That if he loved himself, he should be merciful to his 

beast." Thus he left the poor man, and at his coming to his 

musical friends at Salisbury, they began to wonder that Mr. 
George Herbert, which used to be so trim and clean, came into 

8 To keep the ember-weeks."] See vol. iii. Life of Hooker, p. 526, or Index, 
under Ember-weeks. 

9 Duty of catechizing.'] See above, Life of Colet,vo\. i. p. 438, n. See also 
Index, under Catechizing. 

1 Of Dr. Lake..'] See a Short View of the Life and Virtues of Dr. Arthur 
Lake, Bishop of Bath and Wells, prefixed to his Sermons, fol. 1 629. 


that company so soiled and discomposed ; but he told them the 
occasion : and when one of the company told him, " He had dis- 
paraged himself by so dirty an employment ;" his answer was, 
" That the thought of what he had done, would prove music to 
him at midnight ; and that the omission of it would have 
upbraided and made discord in his conscience, whensoever he 
should pass by that place ; for, if I be bound to pray for all that 
be in distress, I am sure that I am bound so far as it is in my 
power to practise what I pray for. And though I do not wish 
for the like occasion every day, yet let me tell you, I would not 
willingly pass one day of my life without comforting a sad soul, 
or shewing mercy ; and I praise God for this occasion : and now 
let's tune our instruments." 

Thus, as our blessed Saviour after his resurrection did take 
occasion to interpret the Scripture to Cleophas and that other 
disciple, which he met with and accompanied in their journey to 
Emmaus ; so Mr. Herbert, in his path toward heaven, did daily 
take any fair occasion to instruct the ignorant, or comfort any 
that were in affliction ; and did always confirm his precepts, 
by shewing humility and mercy, and ministering grace to the 

And he was most happy in his wife's unforced compliance with 
his acts of charity, whom he made his almoner, and paid con- 
stantly into her hand a tenth penny of what money he received 
for tythe, and gave her power to dispose that to the poor of his 
parish, and with it a power to dispose a tenth part of the corn 
that came yearly into his barn ; which trust she did most faith- 
fully perform, and would often offer to him an account of her stew- 
ardship, and as often beg an enlargement of his bounty, for she 
rejoiced in the employment ; and this was usually laid out by her 
in blankets and shoes, for some such poor people, as she knew to 
stand in most need of them. This, as to her charity. And for 
his own, he set no limits to it ; nor did ever turn his face from 
any that he saw in want, but would relieve them; especially his 
poor neighbours ; to the meanest of whose houses he would go 
and inform himself of their wants, and relieve them cheerfully if 
they were in distress, and, would always praise God, as much for 

being willing, as for being able to do it. And, when he was 

advised by a friend to be more frugal, because he might have 
children. lii> answer was, " He would not sec the danger of want 
BO far nfV. luit. ln-in^ the Scripture does so commend clmrit; 


to tell us, that charity is the top of Christian virtues, the covering 
of sins, the fulfilling of the law, the life of faith : and that charity 
hath a promise of the blessings of this life, and of a reward in 
that life which is to come ; being these, and more excellent 
things are in Scripture spoken of thee, O charity, and that, 
being all my tithes, and church-dues, are a deodate from thee, 
my God ! make me, O my God, so far to trust thy promise, as 
to return them back to thee ; and, by thy grace, I will do so, in 
distributing them to any of thy poor members that are in 
distress, or do but bear the image of Jesus my master. Sir," 
(said he to his friend) " my wife hath a competent mainte- 
nance secured her after my death, and therefore as this is 
my prayer, so this my resolution shall by God's grace be 

This may be some account of the excellencies of the active 
part 2 of his life ; and, thus he continued, till a consumption so 
weakened him, as to confine him to his house, or to the chapel, 
which does almost join to it; in which he continued to read 
prayers constantly twice every day, though he were very weak ; 
in one of which times of his reading, his wife observed him to 
read in pain, and told him so, and, that it wasted his spirits, and 
weakened him : and he confessed it did, but said, " His life could 
not be better spent, than in the service of his master Jesus, who 
had done and suffered so much for him. But," said he, " I will 
not be wilful : for though my spirit be willing, yet I find my flesh 
is weak ; and therefore Mr. Bostock shall be appointed to read 
prayers for me to-morrow, and I will now be only a hearer of 
them, till this mortal shall put on immortality." And Mr. Bostock 
did the next day undertake and continue this happy employment, 

till Mr. Herbert's death. This Mr. Bostock was a learned and 

virtuous man, an old friend of Mr. Herbert's and then his curate 
to the church of Fulston, which is a mile from Bemerton, to 

which church Bemerton is but a chapel of ease. And this 

Mr. Bostock did also constantly supply the church service for 
Mr. Herbert in that chapel, when the music-meeting at Salisbury 
caused his absence from it. 

About one month before his death, his friend Mr. Farrer (for 
an account of whom I am by promise indebted to the reader, and 
intend to make him sudden payment) hearing of Mr. Herbert's 

- The active part.~\ "His time he ever measured by the pulse, that native 
watch which God has set in every one of us." Life by Barnabas Oley. 


sickness, sent Mr. Edmund Duncon (who is now rector of Fryer 
Barnet in the county of Middlesex) from his house of Gidden-hall, 
which is near to Huntingdon, to see Mr. Herbert, and to assure 
him, he wanted not his daily prayers for his recovery ; and, Mr. 
Duncon was to return back to Gidden, with an account of Mr. 
Herbert's condition. Mr. Duncon found him weak, and at that 
time lying on his bed, or on a pallat ; but at his seeing Mr. Dun- 
con, he raised himself vigorously, saluted him, and with some 
earnestness enquired the health of his brother Farrer ; of which 
Mr. Duncon satisfied him ; and after some discourse of Mr. Far- 
rer's holy life, and the manner of his constant serving God, he 

said to Mr. Duncon u Sir, I see by your habit that you are a 

priest, and I desire you to pray with me ;" which being granted, 
Mr. Duncon asked him " what prayers f to which, Mr. Herbert's 
answer was, " sir, the prayers of my mother, the church of 
England, no other prayers are equal to them ! but, at this time, 
I beg of you to pray only the Litany, for I am weak and faint ;" 
and Mr. Duncon did so. After which, and some other discourse 
of Mr. Farrer, Mrs. Herbert provided Mr. Duncon a plain sup- 
per, and a clean lodging, and he betook himself to rest. This 
Mr. Duncon tells me ; and tells me, that at his first view of Mr. 
Herbert, he saw majesty and humility so reconciled in his looks 
and behaviour, as begot in him an awful reverence for his person ; 
and says, " his discourse was so pious, and his motion so gentle 
and meek, that after almost forty years, yet they remain still fmsh 
in his memory." 

The next morning Mr. Duncon left him, and betook himself to 
a journey to Bath, but with a promise to return back to him 
within five days, and he did so ; but before I shall say any thing 
of what discourse then fell betwixt them two, I will pay my pro- 
mised account of Mr. Farrer. 

Mr. Nicholas Farrer (who got the reputation of being called 
saint Nicholas, at the age of six years) was born in London, and 
doubtless had good education in his youth ; but certainly, was at 
an early age made fellow of Clare-hall in Cambridge, where he 
continued to be eminent for his piety, temperance, and learning. 

About the twenty-sixth year of his age, he betook himself to; in which he added to his Latin and Greek, a perfect 
knowledge of all the languages spoken in the western parts of 
our Christian world ; and understood well the principles of their 
religion, and of their manner, and the reasons of their worship. 


In this his travel he met with many persuasions to come into 
a communion with that church which calls itself catholic : but, he 
returned from his travels as he went, eminent for his obedience to 
his mother, the church of England. In his absence from England, 
Mr. Farrer's father (who was a merchant) allowed him a liberal 
maintenance ; and not long after his return into England, Mr. 
Farrer had by the death of his father, or an elder brother, or 
both, an estate left him, that enabled him to purchase land to the 
value of 4 or 500. a year ; the greatest part of which land was at 
Little Gidden 3 , four or six miles from Huntingdon, and about 
eighteen from Cambridge : which place, he chose for the privacy 
of it, and for the hall, which had the parish church, or chapel be- 
longing, and adjoining near to it ; for, Mr. Farrer having seen 
the manners and vanities of the world, and found them to be, as 
Mr. Herbert says, " a nothing between two dishes ;" did so con- 
temn it, that he resolved to spend the remainder of his life in 
mortifications, and in devotion, and charity, and to be always 
prepared for death. And his life was spent thus. 

He, and his family, which were like a little college, and about 
thirty in number, did most of them keep Lent, and all ember- 
weeks strictly, both in fasting, and using all those mortifications 
and prayers that the church hath appointed to be then used : 
and he and they did the like constantly on Fridays, and on the 
vigils, or eves appointed to be fasted before the saints-days : and 
this frugality and abstinence turned to the relief of the poor : but 
this was but a part of his charity, none but God and he knew 
the rest. 

This family, which I have said to be in number about thirty, 
were a part of them his kindred, and the rest chosen to be of a 
temper fit to be moulded into a devout life ; and all of them were 
for their dispositions serviceable and quiet, and humble, and free 
from scandal. Having thus fitted himself for his family, he did 
about the year 1 630, betake himself to a constant and methodical 
service of God, and it was in this manner. He being accom- 
panied with most of his family, did himself use to read the 
common prayers (for he was a deacon) every day at the appointed 
hours of ten and four, in the parish church which was very near 
his house, and which he had both repaired and adorned ; for it 
was fallen into a great ruin, by reason of a depopulation of the 

3 Little Gidden.'] About four or five miles from Leighton. 


village before Mr. Farrer bought the manor; and, he did also 
constantly read the mattins every morning at the hour of six, 
either in the church, or in an oratory, which was within his own 
house : and many of the family did there continue with him after 
the prayers were ended, and there they spent some hours in 
singing hymns, or anthems, sometimes in the church, and often 
to an organ in the oratory. And there they sometimes betook 
themselves to meditate, or to pray privately, or to read a part of 
the New Testament to themselves, or to continue their praying 
or reading the psalms : and, in case the psalms were not always 
read in the day, then Mr. Farrer, and others of the congrega- 
tion, did at night, at the ring of a watch-bell, repair to the 
church or oratory, and there betake themselves to prayers, and 
lauding God, and reading the psalms that had not been read in 
the day ; and, when these, or any part of the congregation grew 
weary, or faint, the watch-bell was rung, sometimes before, and 
sometimes after midnight : and then another part of the family 
rose, and maintained the watch, sometimes by praying, or singing 
lauds to God, or reading the psalms : and when after some hours 
they also grew weary or faint, they rung the watch-bell, and 
were also relieved by some of the former, or by a new part of the 
society, which continued their devotions, (as hath been mentioned) 

until morning. And it is to be noted, that in this continued 

serving of God, the psalter, or whole book of psalms, was in 
every four and twenty hours, sung or read over, from the first to 
the last verse : and this was done as constantly, as the sun runs 
his circle every day about the world, and then begins again the 
same instant that it ended. 

Thus did Mr. Farrer, and his happy family, serve God da\ 
and night: thus did they always behave themselves, as in his 
presence. And, they did always eat and drink by the strictest 
rules of temperance ; eat and drink so, as to be ready to rise at 
midnight, or at the call of a watch-bell, and perform their d 

tions to God. And it is fit to tell the reader that many of 

the clergy that were more inclined to practical piety, and devo- 
tiim. than to doubtful and needless disputations, did often come 
to Gidden-liall. and make themselves a part of that happy society, 
and stay a week or more, and then join with Mr. Farn-r. and the 
family in these devotions, and assist and ease him or them in 
their watch by ni^ht ; and tli-r \ drvntimis had n- 

;han tunnfth.- dnn--tir family in the ni^ht ; and the \\atch 


was always kept in the church or oratory, unless in extreme cold 
winter nights, and then it was maintained in a parlour which had 
a fire in it ; and the parlour was fitted for that purpose ; and 
this course of piety, and great liberality to his poor neighbours, 
Mr. Farrer maintained till his death, which was in the year 

Mr. Farrer's, and Mr. Herbert's devout lives, were both so 
noted, that the general report of their sanctity, gave them occa- 
sion to renew that slight acquaintance which was begun at their 
being contemporaries in Cambridge ; and this new holy friend-- 
ship was long maintained without any interview, but only by 
loving and endearing letters. And, one testimony of their 
friendship and pious designs may appear by Mr. Farcer's com- 
mending the Considerations of John Valdesso 4 (a book which he 
had met with in his travels, and translated out of Spanish into 
English) to be examined and censured by Mr. Herbert before it 
was made public ; which excellent book Mr. Herbert did read, 
and return back with many marginal notes, as they be now 
printed with it : and with them, Mr. Herbert's affectionate 
letter to Mr. Farrer. 

This John Valdesso was a Spaniard, and was for fiis learning 
and virtue much valued and loved by the great emperor Charles 
the fifth, whom Valdesso had followed as a cavalier all the time 
of his long and dangerous wars ; and when Valdesso grew old, 

4 John Valdesso.~\ Juan Valdes, a noble Spaniard, knighted by Charles V., 
was one of the first who introduced the doctrines of the Reformation into 
Naples. He died there in 1540. The original Spanish text of his " Considera- 
tions " has never been printed. An Italian version of the work, (by whom 
made is uncertain,) was taken to Basle by Pietro Paolo Vergerio, when he 
threw up his bishopric of Capo d'Istria, in order to join the reformed church, 
and it was placed by him in the hands of Celio Secondo Curione, who added 
a preface, and published it at Basle in 1550. Another edition was printed at 
Lyons in 1563. From the Italian it was translated into French by C. K. 
(Claude de Kerquifinem,) and printed at Paris in 1565. In the French version 
the author's name is turned into " Jean de Val de d'Esso." Nicholas Farrer's 
English version was made from the Italian, and, with a preface by Dr. Jack- 
son, was printed at Oxford, by L. Lichfield, in 1638, in 4to. Copies of the 
English translation are in the Bodleian and Sion College libraries. The 
Bodleian and the British Museum possess the first Italian edition, and the 
Bodleian has also the French translation. It may be remarked as singular, 
that at the present time, (1852) when so many books have been reprinted, a 
work translated by Nicholas Farrer, having notes by George Herbert, and a 
preface by Thomas Jackson, should have remained unnoticed. 


and grew weary both of war and the world, he took his fair 
opportunity to declare to the emperor, that his resolution was to 
decline his majesty's service, and betake himself to a quiet and 
contemplative life, because there ought to be a vacancy of time 

betwixt fighting and dying. The emperor had himself, for 

the same, or other like reasons, put on the same resolution : but, 
God and himself did, till then, only know them; and he did 
therefore desire Valdesso to consider well of what he had said, 
and to keep his purpose within his own breast, till they two might 
have a second opportunity of a friendly discourse : which Val- 
desso promised to do. 

In the mean time, the emperor appoints privately a day for 
him and Valdesso to meet again, and, after a pious and free dis- 
course they both agreed on a certain day to receive the blessed 
sacrament publicly : and, appointed an eloquent and devout friar, 
to preach a sermon of contempt of the world, and of the hap- 
piness and benefit of a quiet and contemplative life ; which the 

friar did most affectionately. After which sermon, the emperor 

took occasion to declare openly, " That the preacher had begot 
in him a resolution to lay down his dignities, and to forsake the 
world, and betake himself to a monastical life." And, he pre- 
tended, he had persuaded John Valdesso to do the like ; but this 
is most certain, that after the emperor had called his son Philip 
out of England, and resigned to him all his kingdoms, that then 
the emperor, and John Valdesso did perform their resolutions. 

This account of John Valdesso I received from a friend, that 
had it from the mouth of Mr. Farrer : and, the reader may note, 
that in this retirement, John Valdesso writ his one hundred and 
ten considerations, and many other treatises of worth, which want 
a second Mr. Farrer to procure, and translate them. 

After this account of Mr. Farrer, and John Valdesso, I 
proceed to my account of Mr. Herbert, and Mr. Duncon, who. 
according to his promise, returned from the Bath the fifth day, 
ami then found Mr. Herbert much weaker than he left him : and 
therefore the discourse could not be long; but at Mr. Duncon's 

parting with him, Mr. Herbert spoke to this purpose " Sir, 

I pray give my brother Farrer an account of the decaying con- 
dition of my body, and tell him, I beg him to continue his daily 
prayers for me: and, let him know, that I have considered, That 
God only is what In- would he; and. that I am by his gran- 
me now v. like him. as to be pl.--a>ed \\ith what pleas.-th 


him ; and tell him, that I do not repine but am pleased with my 
want of health ; and tell him, my heart is fixed on that place 
where true joy is only to be found, and, that I long to be there, 
and do wait for my appointed change with hope and patience." 
Having said this, he did with so sweet a humility as seemed to 
exalt him, bow down to Mr. Duncon, and with a thoughtful and 

contented look, say to him " Sir, I pray deliver this little 

book to my dear brother Farrer, and tell him, he shall find in it 
a picture of the many spiritual conflicts that have past betwixt 
God and my soul, before I could subject mine to the will of Jesus 
my master ; in whose service I have now found perfect freedom : 
desire him to read it ; and then, if he can think it may turn to 
the advantage of any dejected poor soul, let it be made public : 
if not, let him burn it : for, I and it are less than the least of 

God's mercies." Thus meanly did this humble man think of 

this excellent book, which now bears the name of THE TEMPLE : 
or, Sacred Poems, and Private Ejaculations ; of which, Mr. Farrer 
would say, " There was in it the picture of a divine soul in every 
page ; and, that the whole book was such a harmony of holy 
passions, as would enrich the world with pleasure and piety. 11 
And, it appears to have done so : for there have been more than 
twenty thousand of them sold since the first impression. 

And this ought to be noted, that when Mr. Farrer sent this 
book to Cambridge to be licensed for the press, the vice-chancellor 
would by no means allow the two so much noted verses, 

" Religion stands a tip-toe in our land, 
Ready to pass 5 to the American strand," 

5 Ready to pass.] " Now, I beseech you, let me know what your opinion 
is of our English plantations in the New World. Heretofore I have won- 
dered in my thoughts at the providence of God concerning that world, not 
discovered till this old world of ours is almost at an end ; and then no foot- 
steps found of the knowledge of the true God, much less of Christ. And 
then considering our English plantations of late, and the opinion of many 
grave divines concerning the Gospel's fleeting westward, sometimes I have had 
such thoughts, why may not that be the place of New Jerusalem ? But you 
have handsomely and fully cleared me from such odd conceits. But what ? 
I pray you, shall our English there degenerate and join themselves with Gog 
and Magog. We have heard lately divers ways, that our people there have no 
hope of the conversion of the natives. And the very week after I received 
your last letter, I saw a letter written from New England, discoursing of an 
impossibility of subsisting there; and seems to prefer the confession of God's 
truth in any condition here in Old England father than run over to enjoy 



to be printed ; and Mr. Farrer would by no means allow the 
book to be printed, and want them. But after some time, and 
some arguments, for and against their being made public, the 
vice-chancellor said, " I knew Mr. Herbert well, and know that 
he had many heavenly speculations, and was a divine poet, but, I 
hope the world will not take him to be an inspired prophet, and 
therefore I licence the whole book." So that it came to be 
printed, without the diminution or addition of a syllable, since it 
was delivered into the hands of Mr. Duncon, save only, that Mr. 
Farrer hath added that excellent preface that is printed, be- 
fore it. 

At the time of Mr. Duncon*s leaving Mr. Herbert, (which was 
about three weeks before his death) his old and dear friend Mr. 
Woodnot came from London to Bemerton, and never left him, 
till he had seen him draw his last breath ; and closed his eyes on 
his death-bed. In this time of his decay, he was often visited and 
prayed for by all the clergy that lived near to him, especially by 
his friends the bishop and prebends of the cathedral church in 
Salisbury ; but by none more devoutly than his wife, his three 
nieces (then a part of his family) and Mr. Woodnot, who were 
the sad witnesses of his daily decay ; to whom he would often 

speak to this purpose. u I now look back upon the pleasures 

of my life past, and see the content I have taken in beauty, in 
wit, in music, and pleasant conversation, are now all past by me, 
like a dream, or as a shadow that returns not, and are now all 
become dead to me, or I to them ; and I see that as my father 
and generation hath done before me, so I also shall now suddenly 
(with Job) make my led also in the dark ; and, I praise God I am 
prepared for it ; and I praise him, that I am not to learn patience, 
now I stand in such need of it ; and, that I have practised mor- 
tification, and endeavoured to die daily, that I might not die 
eternally ; and, my hope is, that I shall shortly leave this valley 

their liberty there : yea, and that the Gospel is likely to be more dear in New 
England than in Old : and lastly, unless they be exceeding careful, and God 
wonderfully merciful, they are like to lose that life and zeal for God and his 
truth in New England, which they enjoyed in Old : as whereof they have 
already woeful experience, and many there feel it to their smart." Letter 
of Dr'. W. Twisse to Joseph Mede, dated March 2, 1634. Mede's Works, 
p. 799. 

Barnabas Oley, in his Life of Herbert, referring to the same lines, says, 
" I pray God he may prove a true prophet for poor America, not nyainst poor 


of tears, and be free from all fevers and pain : and, which will be 
a more happy condition, I shall be free from sin, and all the 
temptations and anxieties that attend it ; and this being past, I 
shall dwell in the new Jerusalem, dwell there with men made 
perfect ; dwell, where these eyes shall see my master and Saviour 
Jesus ; and, with him see my dear mother, and all my relations 

and friends. But I must die, or not come to that happy place. 

And, this is my content, that I am going daily towards it ; and, 
that every day which I have lived hath taken a part of my ap- 
pointed time from me ; and, that I shall live the less time, for, 
having lived this, and the day past." These and the like 
expressions, which he uttered often, may be said to be his enjoy- 
ment of heaven, before he enjoyed it. The Sunday before his 

death, he rose suddenly from his bed or couch, called for one of 
his instruments, took it into his hand, and said 

" My God, my God, 
My music shall find thee, 

And every string 
Shall have his attribute to sing." 

And having tuned it, he played and sung : 

" The Sundays of man's life, 

Threaded together on time's string, 
Make bracelets, to adorn the wife 

Of the eternal, glorious King : 
On Sundays, heaven's door stands ope ; 

Blessings are plentiful and rife, 
More plentiful than hope." 

Thus he sung on earth such hymns and anthems as the angels 
and he, and Mr. Farrer, now sing in heaven. 

Thus he continued meditating and praying, and rejoicing, till 
the day of his death ; and on that day, said to Mr. Woodnot, 
" My dear friend, I am sorry I have nothing to present to my 
merciful God but sin and misery ; but the first is pardoned : and 
a few hours will now put a period to the latter ; for I shall sud- 
denly go hence and be no more seen." Upon which expression, 
Mr. Woodnot took occasion to remember him of the re-edifying 
Layton church, and his many acts of mercy ; to which he made 
answer, saying, " They be good works, if they be sprinkled with 
the blood of Christ, and not otherwise." After this discourse he 
became more restless, and his soul seemed to be weary of her 
earthly tabernacle ; and this uneasiness became so visible, that 

K 2 


his wife, his three nieces, and Mr. Woodnot, stood constantly 
about his bed, beholding him with sorrow, and an unwillingness 
to lose the sight of him whom they could not hope to see much 

longer. As they stood thus beholding him, his wife observed 

him to breathe faintly, and with much trouble ; and observed him 
to fall into a sudden agony ; which so surprised her, that she fell 
into a sudden passion, and required of him to know, " how he 
did f to which his answer was, " That he had past a conflict with 
his last enemy, and had overcome him, by the merits of his master 
Jesus." After which answer, he looked up, and saw his wife and 
nieces weeping to an extremity, and charged them, u If they 
loved him, to withdraw into the next room, and there pray every 
one alone for him, for nothing but their lamentations could make 
his death uncomfortable. 1 '* To which request, their sighs and 
tears would not suffer them to make any reply : but they yielded 
him a sad obedience, leaving only with him, Mr. Woodnot, and 
Mr. Bostock. Immediately after they had left him, he said to 
Mr. Bostock, " Pray sir open that door, then look into that 
cabinet, in which you may easily find my last will, and give it into 
my hand ;" which being done Mr. Herbert delivered it into the 
hand of Mr. Woodnot, and said, " My old friend, I here deliver 
you my last will, in which you will find that I have made you my 
sole executor for the good of my wife and nieces ; and I desire you 
to shew kindness to them, as they shall need it. I do not desire 
you to be just : for, I know you will be so for your own sake ; 
but, I charge you, by the religion of our friendship, to be careful 
of them. 1 ' And having obtained Mr. Woodnot^s promise to be 
so ; he said, " I am now ready to die :" after which words he 
said, " Lord, forsake me not now my strength faileth me : but 
grant me mercy for the merits of my Jesus ; and now Lord, 
Lord now receive my soul. 11 And with those words he breathed 
forth his divine soul, without any apparent disturbance: Mr. 
Woodnot, and Mr. Bostock, attending his last breath, and closing 
his eyes. 

Thus he lived, and thus he died like a saint, unspotted of the 
world, full of alms-deeds, full of humility, and all the examples of 
a virtuous life; which I cannot conclude better, than with this 
borrowed observation : 

"... All must to their cold graves ; 
But the religious actions of the just, 
Smell sweet in death, and blossom in the dust." 


Mr. George Herbert's have done so to this, and will doubtless 

do so to succeeding generations. 1 have but this to say more 

of him : that if Andrew Melvin died before him, then George 

Herbert died without an enemy. 1 wish (if God shall be so 

pleased) that I may be so happy as to die like him. 

Iz. WA. 

There is a debt justly due to the memory of Mr. Herbert's 
virtuous wife ; a part of which I will endeavour to pay, by a very 
short account of the remainder of her life, which shall follow. 

She continued his disconsolate widow about six years, bemoan- 
ing herself, and complaining, " that she had lost the delight of her 
eyes," but more " that she had lost the spiritual guide for her pool- 
soul ;" and would often say, " that I had like holy Mary, the 
mother of Jesus, treasured up all his sayings in my heart : but 
since I have not been able to do that, I will labour to live like 
him, that where he now is, 1 may be also." And she would often 
say (as the prophet David for his son Absalom) that Iliad died 
for him ! Thus she continued mourning, till time and conversa- 
tion had so moderated her sorrows, that she became the happy 
wife of sir Robert Cook of Highnam in the county of Gloucester 
knight : and though he put a high value on the excellent accom- 
plishments of her mind and body ; and was so like Mr. Herbert, 
as not to govern like a master, but as an affectionate husband ; 
yet, she would even to him often take occasion to mention the 
name of Mr. George Herbert, and say, " That name must live in 

her memory, till she put off mortality." By sir Robert, she had 

only one child, a daughter, whose parts and plentiful estate make 
her happy in this world, and her well using of them, gives a fail- 
testimony, that she will be so in that which is to come. 

Mrs. Herbert was the wife of sir Robert eight years, and lived 
his widow about fifteen ; all which time she took a pleasure in 
mentioning, and commending the excellencies of Mr. George 
Herbert. She died in the year 1663, and lies buried at Highnam : 
Mr. Herbert in his own church, under the altar, and covered with 
a grave-stone without any inscription. 

This lady Cook had preserved many of Mr. Herbert's private 
writings, which she intended to make public : but they, and 
Highnam house, were burnt together, by the late rebels, and so 
lost to posterity. I. W. 


LETTERS written by Mr. GEORGE HERBERT, at his being in Cam- 
bridge: with others to his mother, the lady MAGDALEN HER- 
BERT, written by JOHN DONNE, afterwards Dean of St. PauFs. 

Mr. GEORGE HERBERT to N. F. 6 the translator of Valdesso. 

My dear and deserving brother, your Valdesso I now return 
with many thanks, and some notes, in which perhaps you will 
discover some care, which I forbear not in the midst of my griefs ; 
first for your sake ; because, I would do nothing negligently that 
you commit unto me ; secondly for the author's sake, whom I 
conceive to have been a true servant of God ; and to such, and 
all that is theirs, I owe diligence ; thirdly for the church's sake, 
to whom by printing it, I would have you consecrate it. You 
owe the church a debt, and God hath put this into your hands 
(as he sent the fish with money to St. Peter) to discharge it : 
happily also with this (as his thoughts are fruitful) intending the 
honour of his servant the author, who being obscured in his own 
country, he would have to flourish in this land of light, and 
region of the gospel, among his chosen. It is true, there are 
some things which I like not in him, as my fragments will express, 
when you read them ; nevertheless, I wish you by all means to 
publish it ; for these three eminent things observable therein : 
first, that God in the midst of popery should open the eyes of 
one to understand and express so clearly and excellently the 
intent of the gospel in the acceptation of Christ's righteousness : 
(as he sheweth through all his considerations,) a thing strangely 
buried, and darkened by the adversaries, and their great stum- 
bling block. Secondly, the great honour and reverence which he 
every where bears towards our dear master and lord ; concluding 
every consideration almost with his holy name, and setting his 
merit forth so piously ; for which I do so love him, that were 
there nothing else, I would print it, that with it the honour of my 
lord might be published. Thirdly, the many pious rules of order- 
ing our life, about mortification, and observation of God's king- 
dom within us, and the working thereof; of which he was a very 
diligent observer. These three things are very eminent in the 

6 N. F.] Nicholas Ferrar, see p. 47. 


author, and overweigh the defects (as I conceive) towards the 
publishing thereof. 

From his Parsonage of Bemerton, near 
Salisbury, Sept. 29, 1632. 

To SIR J. D / 


Though I had the best wit in the world, yet it would easily tire 
me, to find out variety of thanks for the diversity of your favours, 
if I sought to do so ; but, I profess it not : and therefore let it be 
sufficient for me, that the same heart, which you have won long 
since, is still true to you, and hath nothing else to answer your 
infinite kindnesses, but a constancy of obedience ; only hereafter 
I will take heed how I propose my desires unto you, since I find 
you so willing to yield to my requests ; for, since your favours come 
on horseback, there is reason, that my desires should go on foot : 
neither do I make any question, but that you have performed 
your kindness to the full, and that the horse is every way fit for 
me, and I will strive to imitate the completeness of your love, 
with being in some proportion, and after my manner, 

Your most obedient servant, 


For my dear sick sister 8 . 

Most dear Sister, 

Think not my silence forge tfulness ; or, that my love is as dumb 
as my papers ; though businesses may stop my hand, yet my 
heart, a much better member, is always with you : and which is 
more, with our good and gracious God, incessantly begging some 
ease of your pains, with that earnestness, that becomes your 

7 Sir J. D.] Sir John Danvers, step-father to George Herbert. 

8 Sick sister.'] Elizabeth, the eldest, married to Sir Henry Jones. " The 
latter end of her time was the most sickly and miserable that hath been 
known in our times, while for the space of about fourteen years she lan- 
guished and pined away to skin and bones, and at last died in London." 
Life of Lord Herbert of Cherbury, p. 15. 


griefs, and my love. God who knows and sees this writing, knows 
also that my soliciting him has been much, and my tears many 
for you ; judge me then by those waters, and not by my ink, and 
then you shall justly value 

Your most truly, 

most heartily, 

affectionate brother, 

and servant, 

Decem. 6, 1620. GEORGE HEUBEI; i 

Trin. Coll. 


I dare no longer be silent, least while I think I am modest, I 
wrong both myself, and also the confidence my friends have in 
me ; wherefore I will open my case unto you, which I think 
deserves the reading at the least ; and it is this, I want books 
extreamly. You know sir, how I am now setting foot into 
divinity, to lay the platform of my future life, and shall I then be 
fain always to borrow books, and build on another's foundation ? 
What tradesman is there who will set up without his tools? 
Pardon my boldness sir, it is a most serious case, nor can I write 
coldly in that wherein consisteth the making good of my former 
education, of obeying that spirit which hath guided me hitherto, 
and of atchieving my (I dare say) holy ends. This also is aggra- 
vated, in that I apprehend what my friends would have been for- 
ward to say, if I had taken ill courses, " Follow your book, and 
you shall want nothing." You know sir, it is their ordinary 
speech, and now let them make it good ; for since I hope I have 
not deceived their expectation, let not them deceive mine. But 
perhaps they will say, " You are sickly, you must not study too 
hard." It is true (God knows) I am weak, yet not so but that 
every day I may step one step towards my journey's end ; and I 
love my friends so well, as that if all things proved not well, I 
had rather the fault should lie on me, than on them. But they 
will object again, "What becomes of your annuity?" Sir, ii' 
tin-re li aii\ truth in me, I find it little enough to keep me in 
health. You know I was sick last vacation, neither am I yet 

9 Sir.] Sir John Danvers. 


recovered, so that I am fain ever and anon, to buy somewhat 
tending towards my health, for infirmities are both painful and 
costly. Now this Lent I am forbid utterly to eat any fish, so 
that I am fain to diet in my chamber at mine own cost ; for in 
our public halls, you know, is nothing but fish and whit-meats. 
Out of Lent also twice a week, on Fridays and Saturdays, I must 
do so, which yet sometimes I fast. Sometimes also I ride to 
Newmarket, and there lie a day or two for fresh air ; all which 
tend to avoiding of costlier matters, if I should fall absolutely 
sick. I protest and vow, I even study thrift, and yet I am scarce 
able with much ado to make one half year n s allowance, shake hands 
with the other : and yet if a book of four or five shillings come in 
my way, I buy it, though I fast for it ; yea, sometimes of ten 
shillings. But alas sir, what is that to those infinite volumes of 
divinity, which yet every day swell, and grow bigger. Noble sir, 
pardon my boldness, and consider but these three things. First, 
the bulk of divinity. Secondly, the time when I desire this 
(which is now, when I must lay the foundation of my whole life.) 
Thirdly, what I desire, and to what end, not vain pleasures, nor 
to a vain end. If then, sir, there be any course, either by engaging 
my future annuity, or any other way, I desire you, sir, to be my 
mediator to them in my behalf. 

Now I write to you, sir, because to you I have ever opened my 
heart ; and have reason, by the patents of your perpetual favour 
to do so still, for I am sure you love 

Your faithfullest servant, 


March 18, 1617. 
Trin. Coll 

Sir 1 , 

This week hath loaded me with your favours. I wish I could 
have come in person to thank you, but it is not possible ; presently 
after Michaelmas, I am to make an oration to the whole university 
of an hour long in Latin, and my Lincoln journey hath set me 
much behind hand. Neither can I so much as go to Bugden, and 
deliver your letter, yet have I sent it thither by a faithful mes- 
senger this day. I beseech you all, you and my dear mother and 

1 Sir.'] Sir John Danvers. 


sister to pardon me, for my Cambridge necessities are stronger to 
tie me here, than your's to London. If I could possibly have 
come, none should have done my message to sir Fr. Nethersole 
for me ; he and I are ancient acquaintance, and I have a strong 
opinion of him, that if he can do me a courtesy, he will of himself; 
yet your appearing in it affects me strangely. I have sent you 
here inclosed a letter from our master in my behalf, which if you 
can send to sir Francis before his departure, it will do well, for 
it expresseth the university's inclination to me ; yet if you cannot 
send it with much convenience, it is no matter, for the gentleman 
needs no incitation to love me. 

The orator's place (that you may understand what it is) is the 
finest place in the university, though not the gainfullest. Yet 
that will be about 30. per an. but the commodiousness is beyond 
the revenue; for the orator writes all the university letters, 
makes all the orations, be it to king, prince, or whatever comes 
to the university. To requite these pains, he takes place next 
the doctors, is at all their assemblies and meetings, and sits above 
the proctors, is regent or non-regent at his pleasure, and such like 
gaynesses, which will please a young man well. 

I long to hear from sir Francis. I pray sir send the letter you 
receive from him to me as soon as you can, that I may work the 
heads to my purpose. I hope I shall get this place without all 
your London helps, of which I am very proud ; not but that I 
joy in your favours, but that you may see, that if all fail, yet I 
am able to stand on mine own legs. Noble sir, I thank you for 
your infinite favours, I fear only that I have omitted some 
fitting circumstance, yet you will pardon my haste, which is very 
great, though never so, but that I have both time and work 
to be 

Your extream servant, 


Sir 2 , 

I have received the things you sent me, safe ; and now the 
only thing I long for, is to hear of my dear sick sister ; first, how 
her health fares, next, whether my peace be yet made with IK r 

" Sir.] Sir John Danvers. 


concerning my unkind departure. Can I be so happy, as to hear 
of both these, that they succeed well ? Is it not too much for 
me ? Good sir, make it plain to her, that I loved her even in my 
departure, in looking to her son, and my charge. I suppose she 
is not disposed to spend her eye-sight on a piece of paper, or else 
I had wrote to her : when I shall understand that a letter will be 
seasonable, my pen is ready. Concerning the orator's place all 
goes well yet : the next Friday it is tried, and accordingly you 
shall hear. I have forty businesses in my hands ; your courtesy 
will pardon the haste of 

Your humble servant, 

Jan. 19, 1619. 
Trin. Coll. 

Sir 3 , 

I understand by sir Francis NethersoFs letter, that he fears I 
have not fully resolved of the matter, since this place being civil 
may divert me too much from divinity, at which, not without 
cause he thinks I aim. But, I have wrote him back, that this 
dignity hath no such earthiness in it, but it may very well be 
joined with heaven ; or if it had to others, yet to me it should 
not, for ought I yet knew : and therefore I desire him to send 
me a direct answer in his next letter. I pray sir therefore, cause 
this inclosed to be carried to his brother's house of his own name 
(as I think) at the sign of the Pedler and the Pack on London- 
bridge, for there he assigns me. I cannot yet find leisure to 
write to my lord, or sir Benjamin Ruddyard ; but I hope I shall 
shortly. Though for the reckoning of your favours I shall never 
find time and paper enough, yet I am 

Your readiest servant, 

Octob. 6, 1619. 
Trin. Coll. 

I remember my most humble duty to my mother, who cannot 
think me lazy, since I rode two hundred miles to see a sister, 
in a way I knew not, in the midst of much business, and all 
in a fortnight, not long since. 

3 Sir.] Sir John Danvers. 


To the truly nolle SIR J. D. 4 

I understand by a letter from my brother Henry, that he hath 
bought a parcel of books for me, and that they are coming over. 
Now though they have hitherto travelled upon your charge, yet 
if my sister were acquainted that they are ready, I dare say she 
would make good her promise of taking five or six pound upon 
her, which she hath hitherto deferred to do, not of herself, but 
upon the want of those books which were not to be got in 
England. For that which surmounts, though your noble dispo- 
sition is infinitely free, yet I had rather fly to my old ward, that 
if any cause could be taken of doubling my annuity now, upon 
condition that I should surcease from all title to it after I 
entered into a benefice, I should be most glad to entertain it, 
and both pay for the surplusage of these books, and for ever after 
cease my clamorous and greedy bookish requests. It is high 
time now that I should be no more a burden to you, since I can 
never answer what I have already received; for your favours 
are so ancient, that they prevent my memory, and yet still grow 

Your humble servant, 


I remember my most humble duty to my mother. I have wrote 
to my dear sick sister this week already, and therefore now I 
hope may be excused. 

I pray sir, pardon my boldness of inclosing my brother's letter in 
yourX for it was because I know your lodging, but not his. 

To the worthiest Lady^ MRS. MAGDALEN HERBERT. 


Every excuse hath in it somewhat of accusation, and since I 
am innocent, and yet must excuse, how shall I do for that part 
of accusing? By my troth, as desperate and perplrxcd nun 
L;TO\V from tlicucc bold ; so must I take the boldness of accusing 
you, who would draw so dark a curtain betwixt UK.- and your pur- 

4 Sir.} Sir John Danvcrs. 


poses, as that I had no glimmering, neither of your goings, nor 
the way which my letters might haunt. Yet, I have given this 
licence to travel, but I know not whither, nor it. It is therefore 
rather a pinnace to discover ; and the intire colony of letters, of 
hundreds and fifties, must follow; whose employment is more 
honourable, than that which our state meditates to Virginia, 
because you are worthier than all that country, of which that is 
a wretched inch ; for you have a better treasure, and a harmless- 
ness. If this sound like a flattery, tear it out. I am to my 
letters as rigid a puritan, as Csesar was to his wife. I can as ill 
endure a suspitious and misinterpretable word as a fault ; but 
remember that nothing is flattery which the speaker believes; 
and of the grossest flatteries there is this good use, that they tell 
us what we should be. But madam, you are beyond instruc- 
tion, and therefore there can belong to you only praise; of 
which though you be no good hearer, yet allow all my letters 
leave to have in them one part of it, which is thankfulness 
towards you. 

Your unworthiest servant, 

Except your excepting 

have mended him, 

Mickin, JOHN DONNE. 

July 11, 1607. 

To the worthiest Lady, MRS. MAGDALEN HERBERT. 


This is my second letter, in which though I cannot tell you 
what is good, yet this is the worst that I must be a great part 
of it ; yet to me that is recompensed, because you must be 
mingled. After I knew you were gone (for I must little less 
than accusingly tell you, I knew not you would go) I sent my 
first letter, like a Bevis of Hampton, to seek adventures. This 
day I came to town, and to the best part of it, your house ; for 
your memory is a state-cloth and presence, which I reverence, 
though you be away ; though I need not seek that there, which 
I have about and within me. There, though I found my accusa- 
tion, yet any thing to which your hand is, is a pardon ; yet I 
would not burn my first letter, because as in great destiny no 
small passage can be omitted or frustrated, so in my resolution of 


writing almost daily to you, I would have no link of the chain 
broke by me, both because my letters interpret one another, and 
because only their number can give them weight. If I had your 
commission and instructions to do you the service of a legier 
ambassador here, I could say something of the countess of Devon, 
of the states, and such things. But since to you, who are not 
only a world alone, but the monarchy of the world yourself, 
nothing can be added, especially by me ; I will sustain myself 
with the honour of being 

Your servant extraordinary, 

And without place, 

London, July 23, 1607. 

To the worthiest Lady, MRS. MAGDALEN HERBERT. 


As we must die before we can have full glory and happiness, so 
before I can have this degree of it, as to see you by a letter, I 
must almost die, that is, come to London, to plaguy London ; a 
place full of danger, and vanity, and vice, though the court be 
gone. And such it will be, till your return redeem it. Not that 
the greatest virtue in the world, which is you, can be such a 
marshal, as to defeat, or disperse all the vice of this place ; but 
as higher bodies remove, or contract themselves when better 
come, so at your return we shall have one door open to innocence. 
Yet madam, you are not such an Ireland, as produceth neither 
ill, nor good ; no spiders, nor nightingales, which is a rare degree 
of perfection ; but you have found and practised that experiment, 
that even nature, out of her detesting of emptiness, if we will 
make that our work, to remove bad, will fill us with good things. 
To abstain from it, was therefore but the childhood, and minority 
of your soul, which had been long exercised since, in your manlier 
active part, of doing good. Of which since I have been a witness 
and subject, not to tell you sometimes, that by your influence 
and example I have attained to such a step of goodness, as to be 
thankful, were both to accuse your power and judgment of 
impotency and infirmity. 

Your ladyship's in all services, 

August 2, 1607. .!MIN- 


On MR. GEORGE HERBERT'S Book, intitled The Temple of 
Sacred Poems, sent to a Gentlewoman. 

Know you, fair, on what you look ? 

Divinest love lies in this book : 

Expecting fire from your eyes, 

To kindle this his sacrifice. 

When your hands untie these strings, 

Think you've an angel by the wings, 

One that gladly will be nigh, 

To wait upon each morning sigh ; 

To nutter in the balmy air, 

Of your well-perfumed prayer. 

These white plumes of his he'll lend you, 

Which every day to heaven will send you, 

To take acquaintance of the sphere, 

And all the smooth-fac'd kindred there. 

And though Herbert's name do owe 

These devotions, fairest, know 

That while I lay them on the shrine 

Of your white hand, they are mine. 

To the Hlght Honourable the Lady ANNE, Countess of PEMBROKE 
and MONTAGUE 5 , at Court. 


What a trouble hath your goodness brought on you, by 
admitting our poor services? Now they creep in a vessel of 
metheglin, and still they will be presenting or wishing to see if 
at length they may find out something not unworthy of those 
hands at which they aim. In the mean time a priests blessing, 
though it be none of the courtstile, yet doubtless madam, can do 
you no hurt. Wherefore the Lord make good the blessing of 

5 Montague."] An error for Montgomery; Anne Clifford, sole daughter 
and heir to George, earl of Cumberland, widow of Richard, earl of Dorset, 
and afterwards wife of Philip, earl of Pembroke and Montgomery. " She 
was the oldest, but the most independent courtier in the kingdom : had 
known and admired queen Elizabeth : had refused what she deemed an ini- 
quitous award of king James ; rebuilt her dismantled castles in defiance of 
Cromwell ; and repelled, with disdain, the interposition of a profligate mi- 
nister under Charles the Second." Whitaker's Craven. 


your mother upon you, and cause all her wishes, diligence, 
prayers and tears, to bud, blow and bear fruit in your soul, to 
his glory, your own good, and the great joy of 


Your most faithful servant 
in Christ Jesu, 

Dec. 10, 1631, Bemerton. 

Madam, your poor colony of servants present their humble 


VOT,. IV. 



SIR HENRY WOTTON (whose life I now intend to write) was 
born in the year of our redemption 1568, in Bocton-hall (com- 
monly called Bocton, or Boughton-place, or palace,) in the parish 
of Bocton Malherb, in the fruitful country of Kent ; Bocton-hall 
being an ancient and goodly structure *, beautifying and being 
beautified by the parish church of Bocton Malherb adjoining unto 
it, and both seated within a fair park of the Wottons, on the brow 
of such a hill as gives the advantage of a large prospect and of 
equal pleasure to all beholders. 

But this house and church are not remarkable for any thing so 
much as for that the memorable family of the Wottons 2 have so 
long inhabited the one, and now lie buried in the other, as appears 
by their many monuments in that church : the Wottons being a 
family that hath brought forth divers persons eminent for wisdom 
and valour ; whose heroic acts and noble employments, both in 
England and in foreign parts, have adorned themselves and this 
nation, which they have served abroad faithfully in the discharge 
of their great trust, and prudently in their negotiations with 
several princes ; and also served at home with much honour and 
justice in their wise managing a great part of the public affairs 
thereof, in the various times both of war and peace. 

1 Goodly structure.'] See some engravings, with descriptions of its present 
remains, in Henry Shaw's Elizabethan Architecture. 

2 Family of the Wottons.'] Catharine Wotton, eldest daughter and coheir of 
Thomas, second lord Wotton, and great niece of sir Henry Wotton, married 
Henry, lord Stanhope, son of Philip, first earl of Chesterfield. She was 
created countess of Chesterfield for life. Her grandson, Charles Stanhope 
(younger brother of the third earl of Chesterfield), inherited her estates 
and took the name of Wotton. He died without issue. 

F 2 


But lest I should be thought by any that may incline either to 
deny or doubt this truth, not to have observed moderation in the 
commendation of this family; and also for that I believe the 
merits and memory of such persons ought to be thankfully 
recorded, I shall offer to the consideration of every reader, out 
of the testimony of their pedigree, and our chronicles, a part 
(and but a part) of that just commendation which might be 
from thence enlarged; and shall then leave the indifferent 
reader to judge whether my error be an excess or defect of 

Sir Robert Wotton, of Bocton Malherb, knt. was born about 
the year of Christ 1460 : he lived in the reign of king Edward 
the fourth, was by him trusted to be lieutenant of Guisnes, to be 
knight porter, and comptroller of Calais, where he died, and lies 
honourably buried. 

Sir Edward Wotton 3 , of Bocton Malherb, knight, (son and 
heir of the said sir Robert) was born in the year of Christ 1489, 
in the reign of king Henry the seventh : he was made treasurer 
of Calais, and of the privy council to king Henry the eighth, 
who offered him to be lord chancellor of England ; but (saith 
Hollinshed, in his Chronicle) out of a virtuous modesty he 
refused it. 

Thomas Wotton, of Bocton Malherb, esquire, son and heir of 
the said sir Edward, (and the father of our sir Henry that occa- 
sions this relation,) was born in the year of Christ 1521 : he was 
a gentleman excellently educated, and studious in all the liberal 
arts, in the knowledge whereof he attained unto a great perfec- 
tion ; who, though he had (besides those abilities, a very noble 
and plentiful estate, and the ancient interest of his predecessors) 
many invitations from queen Elizabeth to change his country 
recreations and retirement for a court, offering him a knighthood, 
(she was then with him at his Bocton-hall,) and that to be but as 
an earnest of some more honourable and more profitable employ- 
ment under her ; yet he humbly refused both, being a man of great 
modesty, of a most plain and single heart, of an ancient freedom 
and integrity of mind. A commendation which sir Henry 
Wotton took occasion often to remember with great gladness, 
and thankfully to boast himself the son of such a father; from 

3 Sir Edward Wot ton."] His sister, Margaret, married Thomas Grey, se- 
cond marquis of Dorset, and was grandmother of lady Jane Grey. 


whom indeed he derived that noble ingenuity that was always 
practised by himself, and which he ever both commended and 
cherished in others. This Thomas was also remarkable for hos- 
pitality, a great lover, and much beloved of his country ; to which 
may justly be added, that he was a cherisher of learning, as 
appears by that excellent antiquary Mr. William Lambert 4 , in his 
Perambulation of Kent. 

This Thomas 5 had four sons, sir Edward, sir James, sir John, 
and sir Henry. 

Sir Edward was knighted by queen Elizabeth, and made 
comptroller of her majesty "s household. He was (saith Cambden) 
a man remarkable for many and great employments in the state 
during her reign, and sent several times ambassador into foreign 
nations. After her death he was by king James made comp- 
troller of his household, and called to be of his privy council, and 
by him advanced to be lord Wotton, baron of Merly in Kent, and 
made lord lieutenant of that county. 

Sir James (the second son) may be numbered among the 
martial men of his age, who was in the 38th of queen Elizabeths 
reign (with Robert earl of Sussex, count Lodowick of Nassau, 
don Christophoro, son of Antonio king of Portugal 6 , and divers 
other gentlemen of nobleness and valour) knighted in the field 
near Cadiz 7 in Spain, after they had gotten great honour and 
riches, besides a notable retaliation of injuries by taking that 

Sir John, being a gentleman excellently accomplished both by 
learning and travel, was knighted by queen Elizabeth, and by her 
looked upon with more than ordinary favour, and with intentions 
of preferment ; but death in his younger years put a period to his 
growing hopes. 

Of sir Henry my following discourse shall give an account. 

The descents of these fore-named Wottons were all in a direct 
line, and most of them and their actions in the memory of those 

4 Lambert .] More properly Lambard. 

5 This Thomas.'] Who died llth January, 1587. 

6 King of Portugal.'] Antonio of Portugal, prior of Crato, was a natural 
son of the infant Dom Luis, and grandson of the king Dom Emanuel. After 
the death of the king Dom Sebastian, in 1578, Antonio was one of the pre- 
tenders to the throne of Portugal, and he was supported in his claims by 
Elizabeth of England and by France. 

7 Near Cadiz.'] In June and July, 1596, by the earl of Essex, who gave 
offence to queen Elizabeth by the number of knights he then made. 


with whom we have conversed ; but if I had looked so far back 
as to sir Nicholas Wotton, (who lived in the reign of king 
Richard the second,) or before him, upon divers others of great 
note in their several ages, I might by some be thought tedious ; 
and yet others may more justly think me negligent if I omit to 
mention Nicholas Wotton, the fourth son of sir Robert, whom I 
first named. 

This Nicholas Wotton was doctor of law, and sometime dean 
both of York and Canterbury ; a man whom God did not only 
bless with a long life, but with great abilities of mind, and an 
inclination to employ them in the service of his country, as is 
testified by his several employments 3 ; having been nine times 
ambassador unto foreign princes ; and by his being a privy coun- 
cillor to king Henry the eighth, to Edward the sixth, to queen 
Mary, and queen Elizabeth ; who also, after he had been during 
the wars between England, Scotland, and France, three several 
times (and not unsuccessfully) employed in committees for settling 
of peace betwixt this and those kingdoms, died (saith learned 

Cambden) full of commendations for wisdom and piety. He 

was also by the will of king Henry the eighth made one of his 
executors, and chief secretary of state to his son, that pious 
prince Edward the sixth. Concerning which Nicholas Wotton 8 

* Camden in his Britannia. 

8 Concerning which Nicholas WottonJ] When we consider the numerous 
and very important negotiations in which Nicholas Wotton was engaged, it 
appears at first sight somewhat strange that so few of his letters or papers 
should be known to exist : that such is the case is owing in all probability to 
the caution of lord Burghley, with whom even from early life Wotton was 
intimate, and whose secrets he possessed. After the death of dean W T otton, 
lord Burghley applied to the nephew (the Thomas Wotton who was saved by 
the well-timed dream mentioned at p. 74, father of sir Henry), and received 
from him, on the 1 8th of March, 1583, the great bulk of the dean's papers. 
They are not now however to be found amongst the Cecil Papers, which be- 
longed to lord Exeter, and which are now in the British Museum, neither are 
they amongst those belonging to the marquess of Salisbury, who possesses 
only the few letters of Wotton which are printed by Murdin and Haynes. 
There are some few in the State Paper Office which have been recently brought 
to light by Mr. Fraser Tytler, and are printed in his England during the reigns 
of Edward VI. and Mary. Two very curious volumes of historical and genea- 
logical collections in the handwriting of the dean are preserved in the British 
Museum, and the late sir George Nayler possessed a similar volume, which 
now (1852) belongs to sir Thomas Phillipps, bart. These volumes sufficiently 
attest the writer's great knowledge and research. 


I shall say but this little more : that he refused (being offered it 
by queen Elizabeth) to be b archbishop of Canterbury ; and that 
he died not rich, though he lived in that time of the dissolution 
of abbeys. 

More might be added : but by this it may appear, that sir 
Henry Wotton was a branch of such a kindred as left a stock 
of reputation to their posterity ; such reputation as might kindle 
a generous emulation in strangers, and preserve a noble ambition 
in those of his name and family to perform actions worthy of 
their ancestors. 

And that sir Henry Wotton did so, might appear more per- 
fectly than my pen can express it, if of his many surviving friends 
some one of higher parts and employment had been pleased to 
have commended his to posterity. But since some years are now 
past, and they have all (I know not why) forborne to do it, my 
gratitude to the memory of my dead friend, and the renewed 
request of some c that still live solicitous to see this duty per- 
formed ; these have had a power to persuade me to undertake it ; 
which truly I. have not done but with some distrust of mine own 
abilities, and yet so far from despair, that I am modestly confi- 
dent my humble language shall be accepted, because I shall 
present all readers with a commixture of truth and sir Henry 
Wotton^s merits. 

This being premised, I proceed to tell the reader, that the 
father of sir Henry Wotton was twice married, first to Elizabeth, 
the daughter of sir John Eudstone 9 , knight ; after whose death, 
though his inclination was averse to all contentions, yet neces- 
sitated he was to several suits in law, in the prosecution whereof 
(which took up much of his time, and were the occasion of many 
discontents) he was by divers of his friends earnestly persuaded 
to a remarriage ; to whom he as often answered, That if ever he 

b Hollinshead. 

c Sir Edward Bish, clarencieux king of arms, Mr. Charles Cotton, and 
Mr. Nick Oudert, sometime sir Henry Wotton's servant. 

9 Sir John Rudstone.'] Who had been lord mayor of London in 1528, and 
died in 1531. There was a triple alliance between his family and that of the 
Wottons, as two of his children married two of sir Edward Wotton's, sir 
Edward himself having married sir John's widow. He seems to have been 
possessed of great wealth. The Harleian MS. 1231 contains nothing else 
than his will, inventories of his goods, and deeds relative to his widow and 
her marriage. 


did put on a resolution to marry, he was seriously resolved to avoid 
three sorts of persons : 

C that had children, 
namely, those -j that had law-suits. 

v that were of his kindred. 

And yet, following his own law-suit, he met in Westminster- 
hall with Mrs. Elionora Morton, widow to Robert Morton l of 
Kent, esquire, who was also engaged in several suits in law ; and 
he, observing her comportment at the time of hearing one of her 
causes before the judges, could not but at the same time both 
compassionate her condition and affect her person (for the tears 
of lovers, or beauty drest in sadness, are observed to have in 
them a charming eloquence, and to become very often too strong 
to be resisted,) which I mention, because it proved so with this 
Thomas Wotton ; for although there were in her a concurrence 
of all those accidents against which he had so seriously resolved, 
yet his affection to her grew then so strong, that he resolved to 
solicit her for a wife ; and did, and obtained her. 

By her (who was the daughter of sir William Finch a , of East- 
well, in Kent,) he had only Henry his youngest son. His 

mother undertook to be tutoress unto him during much of his 
childhood ; for whose care and pains he paid her each day with 
such visible signs of future perfection in learning as turned her 
employment into a pleasing trouble, which she was content to 
continue till his father took him into his own particular care, and 
disposed of him to a tutor in his own house at Bocton. 

And when time and diligent instruction had made him fit for a 
removal to an higher form (which was very early) he was sent to 
Winchester school, a place of strict discipline and order ; that 
so he might in his youth be moulded into a method of living 
by rule, which his wise father knew to be the most necessary 
way to make the future part of his life both happy to himself, 
and useful for the discharge of all business, whether public or 

And that he might be confirmed in this regularity, he was at 
a fit age removed from that school to be commoner of New college 

1 Robert Morton.'] By whom she was mother of sir Albertus Morton. 
: Sir William Finch.] Ancestor of the earls of Winchelsea and Nottingham, 
and Aylesford. 

3 To be commoner.] He was admitted in 1584. 


in Oxford, both being founded by William Wickham, bishop of 

There he continued till about the eighteenth year of his age, 
and was then transplanted into Queen's college, where within that 
year he was by the chief of that college persuasively enjoined to 
write a play for their private use, (it was the tragedy of Tan- 
credo,) which was so interwoven with sentences, and for the 
method and exact personating those humours, passions and dis- 
positions, which he proposed to represent, so performed, that the 
gravest of that society declared he had in a slight employment 
given an early and a solid testimony of his future abilities. And 
though there may be some sour dispositions, which may think 
this not worth a memorial, yet that wise knight Baptista Guarini 4 
(whom learned Italy accounts one of her ornaments) thought 
it neither an uncomely nor an unprofitable employment for 
his age. 

But I pass to what will be thought more serious. 

About the twentieth year of his age he proceeded master of 
arts, and at that time read in Latin three lectures de oculo ; 
wherein he having described the form, the motion, the curious 
composure of the eye ; and demonstrated how of those very many, 
every humour and nerve performs his distinct office, so as the 
God of order hath appointed, without mixture or confusion ; and 
all this to the advantage of man, to whom the eye is given, not 
only as the body's guide, but whereas all other of his senses 
require time to inform the soul, this in an instant apprehends 
and warns him of danger, teaching him in the very eyes of others 
to discover wit, folly, love, and hatred. After he had made 
these observations he fell to dispute this optique question, 
" Whether we see by the emission of the beams from within, or 
reception of the species from without f and after that, and many 
other like learned disquisitions, he in the conclusion of his lectures 
took a fair occasion to beautify his discourse with a commendation 
of the blessing and benefit of seeing ; by which we do not only 
discover nature's secrets ; but with a continued content (for the 
eye is never weary of seeing) behold the great light of the world, 
and by it discover the fabric of the heavens, and both the order 
and motion of the celestial orbs ; nay, that if the eye look but 
downward, it may rejoice to behold the bosom of the earth, our 

4 Guarini.'] Giovanni Battista Guarini, the author of the Pastor Fido. 


common mother, embroidered and adorned with numberless and 
various flowers, which man sees daily grow up to perfection, and 
then silently moralize his own condition, who in a short time 
(like those very flowers) decays and withers, and quickly returns 
again to that earth from which both had their first being. 

These were so exactly debated, and so rhetorically heightened 
as, among other admirers, caused that learned Italian, Albericus 
Gentilis 5 (then professor of the civil law in Oxford) to call him 
Henrice, mi ocelle ; which dear expression of his was also used by 
divers of sir Henry^s dearest friends, and by many other persons 
of note, during his stay in the university. 

But his stay there was not long ; at least, not so long as his 
friends once intended ; for the year after sir Henry proceeded 
master of arts, his father (whom sir Henry did never mention 
without this or some like reverential expression, as That good 
man my father, or my father the best of men :) about that time this 
good man changed this for a better life, leaving to sir Henry, as 
to his other younger sons, a rent-charge of an hundred marks a 
year, to be paid for ever out of some one of his manors of a much 
greater value. 

And here, though this good man be dead, yet I wish a circum- 
stance or two that concern him may not be buried without a rela- 
tion ; which I shall undertake to do, for that I suppose they may 
so much concern the reader to know, that I may promise myself 
a pardon for a short digression. 

In the year of our redemption 1553 Nicholas Wotton, dean of 
Canterbury (whom I formerly mentioned) being then ambassador 
in France, dreamed that his nephew, this Thomas Wotton, was 
inclined to be a party in such a project as, if he were not suddenly 
prevented, would turn both to the loss of his life and ruin of his 

Doubtless the good dean did well know that common dreams 
are but a senseless paraphrase on our waking thoughts, or of the 
business of the day past, or are the result of our over-engaged 
affections when we betake ourselves to rest; and knew that tin- 
observation of them may turn to silly superstitions, as they too 
often do : but though he might know all this, and might also 
believe that prophecies are ceased, yet doubtless he could not but 

' Gentilis.] Of whom an account is given by Ant. a Wood. 


consider, that all dreams are not to be neglected or cast away 
without all consideration, and did therefore rather lay this dream 
aside than intend totally to lose it ; and dreaming the same again 
the night following, when it became a double dream, like that of 
Pharaoh, (of which double dreams the learned have made many 
observations) and considering that it had no dependence on his 
waking thoughts, much less on the desires of his heart, then he 
did more seriously consider it, and remembered that almighty 
God was pleased in a dream to reveal and to assure Monica d , 
the mother of St. Austin, that he, her son, for whom she wept so 
bitterly and prayed so much, should at last become a Christian. 
This I believe the good dean considered ; and considering also 
that almighty God (though the causes of dreams be often un- 
known) hath even in these latter times also, by a certain illumi- 
nation of the soul in sleep, discovered many things that human 
wisdom could not foresee : upon these considerations he resolved 
to use so prudent a remedy, by way of prevention, as might in- 
troduce no great inconvenience either to himself or to his nephew. 
And to that end he wrote to the queen (it was queen Mary) and 
besought her, " That she would cause his nephew Thomas Wot- 
ton, to be sent for out of Kent ; and that the lords of her council 
might interrogate him in some such feigned questions as might 
give a colour for his commitment into a favourable prison ; de- 
claring that he would acquaint her majesty with the true reason 
of his request when he should next become so happy as to see 
and speak to her majesty." 

It was done as the dean desired ; and in prison I must leave 
Mr. Wotton till I have told the reader what followed. 

At this time a marriage was concluded betwixt our queen 
Mary and Philip king of Spain ; and though this was concluded 
with the advice, if not by the persuasion of her privy council, as 
having many probabilities of advantage to this nation, yet divers 
persons of a contrary persuasion did not only declare against it, 
but also raised forces to oppose it ; believing (as they said) it 
would be a means to bring England to be under a subjection to 
Spain, and make those of this nation slaves to strangers. 

And of this number sir Thomas Wyat, of Boxley Abbey, in 
Kent, (betwixt whose family and the family of the Wottons there 
had been an ancient and entire friendship) was the principal 

d St. Austin's Confessions, book iii. ch. ii. 


actor ; who having persuaded many of the nobility and gentry 
(especially in Kent) to side with him, and he being defeated and 
taken prisoner, was legally arraigned and condemned, and lost 
his life 6 : so did the duke of Suffolk, and divers others, especially 
many of the gentry of Kent, who were there in several places 
executed as Wyat^s assistants. 

And of this number, in all probability, had Mr. Wotton been 
if he had not been confined ; for though he could not be ignorant 
that another man's treason makes it mine by concealing it, yet 
he durst confess to his uncle, when he returned into England, 
and then came to visit him in prison, that he had more than an 
intimation of Wyat's intentions, and thought he had not con- 
tinued actually innocent if his uncle had not so happily dreamed 
him into a prison ; out of which place when he was delivered by 
the same hand that caused his commitment, they both considered 
the dream more seriously, and then both joined in praising God 
for it ; that God who ties himself to no rules, either in preventing 
of evil, or in shewing of mercy to those whom of good pleasure he 
hath chosen to love. 

And this dream was the more considerable, because that God, 
who in the days of old did use to speak to his people in visions, 
did seem to speak to many of this family in dreams ; of which I 
will also give the reader one short particular of this Thomas 
Wotton, whose dreams did usually prove true, both in foretelling 
things to come and discovering things past ; and the particular is 
this : This Thomas, a little before his death, dreamed that the 
university treasury was robbed by townsmen and poor scholars ; 
and that the number was five : and being that day to write to his 
son Henry at Oxford, he thought it worth so much pains as by a 
postscript in his letter to make a slight inquiry of it. The letter 
(which was writ out of Kent, and dated three days before,) canic 
to his son's hands the very morning after the night in which the 
robbery was committed; and when the city and university \v.-n- 
both in a perplexed inquest of the thieves, then did sir Henry 
\Vntton shew his fathers letter, and by it such light was gi\'ii 
of this work of darkness, that the five guilty persons were pre- 
sently discovered and apprehended, without putting the university 
to so much trouble as the casting of a figun . 

6 Lost his life.] He was beheaded, April llth, 1554. 

7 Casting a figure J] In our days it sounds strangely that the university of 
Oxford should have resorted to astrology. 


And it may yet be more considerable, that this Nicholas and 
Thomas Wotton should both (being men of holy lives, of even 
tempers, and much given to fasting and prayer,) foresee and fore- 
tell the very days of their own death. Nicholas did so, being 
then seventy years of age, and in perfect health. Thomas did the 
like in the sixty-fifth year of his age, who being then in London 
(where he died) and foreseeing his death there, gave direction in 
what manner his body should be carried to Bocton ; and though 
he thought his uncle Nicholas worthy of that noble monument 8 
which he built for him in the cathedral church of Canterbury, yet 
this humble man gave direction concerning himself to be buried 
privately, and especially without any pomp at his funeral. This 
is some account of this family, which seemed to be beloved of 

But it may now seem more than time that I return to sir Henry 
Wotton at Oxford, where, after his optic lecture, he was taken 
into such a bosom friendship with the learned Albericus Gentilis 
(whom I formerly named) that if it had been possible Gentilis 
would have breathed all his excellent knowledge, both of the 
mathematics and law, into the breast of his dear Harry, (for so 
Gentilis used to call him) and though he was not able to do that, 
yet there was in sir Henry such a propensity and connaturalness 
to the Italian language, and those studies whereof Gentilis was 
a great master, that this friendship between them did daily 
increase, and prove daily advantageous to sir Henry, for the 
improvement of him in several sciences during his stay in the 

From which place, before I shall invite the reader to follow him 
into a foreign nation, though I must omit to mention divers per- 
sons that were then in Oxford, of memorable note for learning, 
and friends to sir Henry Wotton, yet I must not oinit the men- 
tion of a love that was there begun between him and Dr. Donne, 
(sometime dean of St. Paul's,) a man of whose abilities I shall 
forbear to say any thing, because he who is of this nation, and 
pretends to learning or ingenuity, and is ignorant of Dr. Donne, 
deserves not to know him. The friendship of these two I must 

8 That noble monument.'] Of which an engraving by Cole is in Dart's 
History of Canterbury Cathedral: a smaller engraving is in Hasted's History 
of Kent. 


not omit to mention, being such a friendship as was generously 
elemented : and as it was begun in their youth, and in an univer- 
sity, and there maintained by correspondent inclinations and 
studies, so it lasted till age and death forced a separation. 

In Oxford he staid till about two years after his father's death, 
at which time he was about the two and twentieth year of his 
age ; and having to his great wit added the ballast of learning, 
and knowledge of the arts, he then laid aside his books, and be- 
took himself to the useful library of travel, and a more general 
conversation with mankind ; employing the remaining part of his 
youth, his industry and fortune, to adorn his mind, and to pur- 
chase the rich treasure of foreign knowledge ; of which, both for 
the secrets of nature, the dispositions of many nations, their 
several laws and languages, he was the possessor in a very large 
measure, as I shall faithfully make to appear, before I take my 
pen from the following narration of his life. 

In his travels, which was almost nine years before his return 
into England, he staid but one year in France, and most of that 
in Geneva, where he became acquainted with Theodore Beza 
(then very aged), and with Isaac Casaubon, in whose house (if I 
be rightly informed) sir Henry Wotton was lodged, and there 
contracted a most worthy friendship 9 with that man of rare 
learning and ingenuity. 

Three of the remaining eight years were spent in Germany, 
the other five in Italy (the stage on which God appointed he 
should act a great part of his life) where both in Rome, Venice, 
and Florence, he became acquainted with the most eminent men 
for learning, and all manner of arts; as picture, sculpture, 
chemistry, architecture, and other manual arts, even arts of 
inferior nature ; of all which he was a most dear lover, and a 
most excellent judge. 

He returned out of Italy into England about the thirtieth 
year of his age, being then noted by many, both for his person 
and comportment ; for indeed he was of choice shape, tall 
of stature, and of a most persuasive behaviour; which u;i> 
so mixed with sweet discourse, and civilities, as gained him 

" Worthy friendship.'] Wotton's improvidence in pecuniary matters ap- 
pears to have brought Casaubon, who had become his bondsman, into very 
considerable anxiety and difficulty. The matter however, in the end, was 
settled satisfactorily. This was in the years 1594 and 1595. See Isaaci 
Casauboni Epiatobr, fol. 17<M>. p. 11. 12. 1:1. 17. 19. 


much love from all persons with whom he entered into an 

And whereas he was noted in his youth to have a sharp wit, 
and apt to jest ; that by time, travel, and conversation, was so 
polished, and made so useful, that his company seemed to be one 
of the delights of mankind ; insomuch as Robert earl of Essex 
(then one of the darlings of fortune, and in greatest favour with 
queen Elizabeth) invited him first into a friendship, and after a 
knowledge of his great abilities, to be one of his secretaries ; 
(the other being Mr. Henry Cuife, sometime of Merton college 
in Oxford ; and there also the acquaintance of sir Henry Wotton 
in his youth ; Mr. Cuffe being then a man of no common note 
in the university for his learning; nor after his removal from 
that place, for the great abilities of his mind ; nor indeed, for the 
fatalness of his end.) 

Sir Henry Wotton being now taken into a serviceable friend- 
ship with the earl of Essex, did personally attend his counsels 
and employments in two voyages at sea against the Spaniards, 
and also in that (which was the earl's last) into Ireland ; that 
voyage wherein he then did so much provoke the queen to anger, 
and worse at his return into England ; upon whose immoveable 
favour the earl had built such sandy hopes, as encouraged him 
to those undertakings, which with the help of a contrary faction 
suddenly caused his commitment to the Tower. 

Sir Henry Wotton observing this, though he was not of that 
faction (for the earl's followers were also divided into their several 
interests) which encouraged the earl to those undertakings which 
proved so fatal to him, and divers of his confederation ; yet, 
knowing treason to be so comprehensive, as to take in even cir- 
cumstances, and out of them to make such positive conclusions as 
subtle statesmen shall project, either for their revenge or safety ; 
considering this, he thought prevention by absence out of England, 
a better security than to stay in it, and there plead his innocence 
in a prison. Therefore did he, so soon as the earl was appre- 
hended, very quickly, and as privately glide through Kent to 
Dover, without so much as looking toward his native and beloved 
Bocton ; and was by the help of favourable winds and liberal 
payment of the mariners, within sixteen hours after his departure 
from London, set upon the French shore; where he heard 
shortly after, that the earl was arraigned, condemned, and be- 


headed ! ; and that his friend Mr. Cuffe was hanged, and divers 
other persons of eminent quality executed. 

The times did not look so favourably upon sir Henry Wotton, 
as to invite his return into England ; having therefore procured 
of sir Edward Wotton, his elder brother, an assurance that his 
annuity should be paid him in Italy, thither he went, happily 
renewing his intermitted friendship and interest, and indeed, his 
great content in a new conversation with his old acquaintance in 
that nation ; and more particularly in Florence (which city is 
not more eminent for the great duke^s court, than for the great 
recourse of men of choicest note for learning and arts,) in which 
number he there met with his old friend seignior Vietta ', a gen- 
tleman of Venice, and then taken to be secretary to the great 
duke of Tuscany 3 . 

After some stay in Florence, he went the fourth time to visit 
Rome, where in the English college he had very many friends 
(their humanity made them really so, though they knew him to be 
a dissenter from many of their principles of religion,) and having 
enjoyed their company, and satisfied himself concerning some 
curiosities that did partly occasion his journey thither, he returned 
back to Florence, where a most notable accident befell him ; an 
accident that did not only find new employment for his choice 
abilities, but introduce him to a knowledge and an interest with 
our king James, then king of Scotland ; which I shall proceed 
to relate. 

But first, I am to tell the reader, that though queen Elizabeth 
(or she and her council) were never willing to declare her suc- 
cessor; yet James then king of the Scots, was confidently 
believed by most to be the man upon whom the sweet trouble of 
kingly government would be imposed ; and the queen declining 
very fast, both by age and visible infirmities, those that were of 
the Romish persuasion in point of religion (even Rome itself, and 
those of this nation) knowing that the death of the queen, and 
the establishing of her successor, were taken to be critical 
days for destroying or establishing the protestant religion in this 

1 Beheaded.] In 1600. 

2 Seignior Vietta.] Who is not to be confounded with the great mathema- 
tician Francois Viete, then living, a Frenchman, born at Fontenay, in Poitou, 
and master of requests to Margaret of Valois. 

3 Great duke of Tuscany.] Ferdinand de* Medici. 


nation, did therefore improve all opportunities for preventing a 
protestant prince to succeed her. And as the pope's excom- 
munication 4 of queen Elizabeth, had both by the judgment and 
practice of the jesuited papist, exposed her to be warrantably 
destroyed ; so (if we may believe an angry adversary 5 , a " secular 
priest against a Jesuit ") you may believe, that about that time 
there were many endeavours, first to excommunicate, and then to 
shorten the life of king James. 

Immediately after sir Henry Wotton's return from Rome to 
Florence (which was about a year before the death of queen 
Elizabeth) Ferdinand the great duke of Florence had intercepted 
certain letters that discovered a design to take away the life of 
James the then king of Scots. The duke abhorring the fact, 
and resolving to endeavour a prevention of it, advised with his 
secretary Vietta, by what means a caution might be best given 
to that king ; and after consideration, it was resolved to be done 
by sir Henry Wotton, whom Vietta first commended to the duke, 
and the duke had noted and approved of above all the English 
that frequented his court. 

Sir Henry was gladly called by his friend Vietta to the duke, 
who after much profession of trust and friendship, acquainted him 
with the secret ; and being well instructed, dispatched him into 
Scotland with letters to the king, and with those letters, such 
Italian antidotes against poison, as the Scots till then had been 
strangers to. 

Having parted from the duke, he took up the name and lan- 
guage of an Italian ; and thinking it best to avoid the line of 
English intelligence and danger; he posted into Norway, and 
through that country towards Scotland, where he found the king 
at Stirling ; being there, he used means by Bernard Lindsey 6 , 

4 Pope's excommunication^] Pius V.'s in 1576. "It deposed the queen's 
majesty from her royal seat, and tore the crown from her head. It discharged 
all her natural subjects from all due obedience. It armed one side of them 
against another. It emboldened them to burn, to spoil, to rob, to kill, to 
cut one another's throats ; like Pandora's box sent to Epimetheus, full of 
hurtful and unwholesome evils." Bp. Jewel. 

5 An angry adversary .] William Watson, who was hanged in 1603, with 
William Clark and George Brooke, the brother of lord Cobham. The titles of 
his books are, 1. Dialogue betwixt a Secular Priest and a Lay Gentleman, 4to., 
Rhemes, 1601. 2. Decachordon of Ten Quodlibeticall Questions concerning 
Religion and State, 4to., 1602. 

6 Bernard Lindsey.'] So read all the editions, as if a cadet of the houses of 



one of the king's bedchamber, to procure him a speedy and 
private conference with his majesty, assuring him, "That the 
business which he was to negotiate, was of such consequence as 
had caused the great duke of Tuscany to enjoin him suddenly to 
leave his native country of Italy, to impart it to his king." 

This being by Bernard Lindsey made known to the king, the 
king after a little wonder (mixed with jealousy) to hear of an 
Italian ambassador, or messenger, required his name (which was 
said to be Octavio Baldi) and appointed him to be heard privately 
at a fixed hour that evening. 

When Octavio Baldi came to the presence-chamber door, he 
was requested to lay aside his long rapier (which Italian-like he 
then wore) and being entered the chamber, he found there with 
the king three or four Scotch lords standing distant in several 
corners of the chamber ; at the sight of whom he made a stand ; 
which the king observing, "bade him be bold, and deliver his 
message ; for he would undertake for the secrecy of all that were 
present." Then did Octavio Baldi deliver his letters and his 
message to the king in Italian; which, when the king had 
graciously received, after a little pause, Octavio Baldi steps to 
the table and whispers to the king in his own language, that he 
was an Englishman, beseeching him for a more private conference 
with his majesty, and that he might be concealed during his 
stay in that nation ; which was promised, and really performed 
by the king during all his abode there, (which was about three 
months) all which time was spent with much pleasantness to the 
king, and with as much to Octavio Baldi himself, as that country 
could afford ; from which he departed as true an Italian 7 , as he 
came thither. 

To the duke of Florence he returned with a fair and grateful 
account of his employment, and within some few months after 
his return, there came certain news to Florence, that queen 
Elizabeth was dead ; and James king of the Scots proclaimed 
king of England. The duke knowing travel and business to be 
the best schools of wisdom, and that sir Henry Wotton had been 
tutored in both, advised him to return presently to England, and 

Crawford or Balcarres were meant : the real person was Bernard Lindley, 
mentioned by the scandalous chronicler Weldon as one of the Scots who 
obtained large grants from James, after his accession to the English throne. 
7 As true an Italian.] Meaning that his disguise was not discovered. 


there joy the king with his new and better title, and wait there 
upon fortune for a better employment. 

When king James came into England, he found, amongst 
other of the late queen's officers, sir Edward, who was after lord 
Wotton, comptroller of the house, of whom he demanded, " If 
he knew one Henry Wotton, that had spent much time in foreign 
travel 2" the lord replied, he knew him well, and that he was his 
brother ; then the king asking where he then was, was answered, 
at Venice, or Florence ; but by late letters from thence, he 
understood he would suddenly be at Paris. " Send for him," 
said the king, " and when he shall come into England, bid him 
repair privately to me." The lord Wotton after a little wonder, 
asked the king, " if he knew him ?" to which the king answered, 
" You must rest unsatisfied of that, till you bring the gentleman 
to me." 

Not many months after this discourse, the lord Wotton brought 
his brother to attend the king, who took him in his arms, and 
bade him welcome by the name of Octavio Baldi, saying, " he 
was the most honest, and therefore the best dissembler that ever 
he met with:" and said, "Seeing I know you neither want 
learning, travel, nor experience, and that I have had so real a 
testimony of your faithfulness and abilities to manage an ambas- 
sage, I have sent for you to declare my purpose ; which is, to 
make use of you in that kind hereafter :" and indeed the king 
did so most of those two and twenty years of his reign ; but 
before he dismist Octavio Baldi from his present attendance upon 
him, he restored him to his old name of Henry Wotton, by which 
he then knighted him. 

Not long after this, the king having resolved, according to his 
motto (Beati pacifici) to have a friendship with his neighbour- 
kingdoms of France and Spain 8 , and also for divers weighty rea- 
sons, to enter into an alliance with the state of Venice, and to 
that end to send ambassadors to those several places, did propose 
the choice of these employments to sir Henry Wotton ; who 
considering the smallness of his own estate (which he never took 

8 France and Spain.'] With France Elizabeth had always maintained a close 
alliance, but even to the day of her death she held no diplomatic intercourse 
with Spain. By James, soon after his accession, sir Charles Cornwallis was sent 
to Spain, where he remained for several years. His negotiations are in the 
British Museum, and many of them have been printed in Winwood's memo- 
rials. Sir Thomas Parry was the ambassador sent by James to France. 


care to augment) and knowing the courts of great princes to be 
sumptuous, and necessarily expensive, inclined most to that of 
Venice 9 , as being a place of more retirement, and best suiting 
with his genius, who did ever love to join with business, study, 
and a trial of natural experiments ; for both which fruitful Italy, 
that darling of nature, and cherisher of all arts, is so justly famed 
in all parts of the Christian world. 

Sir Henry having after some short time and consideration, 
resolved upon Venice, and a large allowance being appointed by 
the king for his voyage thither, and settled maintenance during 
his stay there, he left England, nobly accompanied through 
France to Venice, by gentlemen of the best families and breeding 
that this nation afforded. They were too many to name, but 
these two, for following reasons may not be omitted ; sir Al- 
bertus Morton 1 his nephew, who went his secretary; and William 
Bedel 2 , a man of choice learning, and sanctified wisdom, who went 
his chaplain. And though his dear friend doctor Donne (then a 
private gentleman) was not one of that number that did personally 
accompany him in this voyage, yet the reading of this following 
letter sent by him to sir Henry Wotton, the morning before he 
left England, may testify he wanted not his friend's best wishes 
to attend him. 

After those reverend papers, whose soul is 

Our good, and great king's loved hand, and feared name : 

By which to you he derives much of his, 
And how he may, makes you almost the same : 

A taper of his torch ; a copy writ 

From his original, and a fair beam 
Of the same warm and dazzling sun, though it 

Must in another sphere his virtue stream : 

9 That of Venice.] With the seignory of Venice Elizabeth had held no 
intercourse. She neither sent nor received an ambassador throughout her 
long reign. Immediately upon her death, the secretary of the republic, Sca- 
ramelli, was sent to congratulate James. The Venetian ambassadors in France 
were ordered to come over to England for the same purpose, and for more 
than a century and a half, with scarcely any intermission, a Venetian resident 
was at the court of England. 

1 Sir Albertus Morton his nephew.] Sir Albertus Morton was not Wotton's 
nephew, but his half-brother. See p. 72. 

- William Bedel.] Afterwards bishop of Kilmore, whose life has been 
written by bishop Burnet. 


After those learned papers which your hand 

Hath stored with notes of use and pleasure too ; 

From which rich treasury you may command 
Fit matter whether you will write or do : 

After those loving papers which friends send 
With glad grief to your sea-ward steps farewel, 

And thicken on you now as prayers ascend 

To heaven on troops at a good man's passing-bell : 

Admit this honest paper ; and allow 

It such an audience as yourself would ask ; 
What you would say at Venice, this says now, 

And has for nature what you have for task : 

To swear much love ; nor to be changed before 

Honour alone will to your fortune fit ; 
Nor shall I then honour your fortune more, 

Than I have done your honour-wanting wit. 

But 'tis an easier load (though both oppress) 

To want, than govern greatness ; for we are 
In that, our own and only business ; 

In this, we must for others vices care. 

'Tis therefore well, your spirits now are plac'd 

In their last furnace, in activity ; 
Which fits them : schools, and courts, and wars o'er past 

To touch and taste in any best degree. 

For me ! (if there be such a thing as I) 

Fortune (if there be such a thing as she) 
Finds that I bear so well her tyranny, 

That she thinks nothing else so fit for me. 

But though she part us, to hear my oft prayers 

For your increase, God is as near me here : 
And to send you what I shall beg, his stairs 

In length and ease, are alike every where. 


Sir Henry Wotton was received by the state of Venice with 
much honour and gladness, both for that he delivered his ambas- 
sage most elegantly in the Italian language, and came also in 
such a juncture of time, as his master's friendship seemed useful 
for that republic. The time of his coming thither was about the 
year 1604, Leonardo Donato being then duke ; a wise and re- 
solved man, and to all purposes such (sir Henry Wotton would 
often say it) as the state of Venice could not then have wanted ; 
there having been formerly in the time of pope Clement the 


eighth 3 , some contests about the privileges of churchmen, and 
power of the civil magistrate ; of which for the information of 
common readers, I shall say a little, because it may give light to 
some passages that follow. 

About the year 1603, the republic of Venice made several 
injunctions against lay-persons giving lands or goods to the 
church, without licence from the civil magistrate ; and in that 
inhibition they expressed their reasons to be, " For that when 
any goods or land once came into the hands of the ecclesiastics, 
it was not subject to alienation; by reason whereof (the lay- 
people being at their death charitable even to excess) the clergy 
grew every day more numerous, and pretended an exemption 
from all public service, and taxes, and from all secular judgment : 
so that the burden grew thereby too heavy to be borne by the 

Another occasion of difference was, that about this time com- 
plaints were justly made by the Venetians against two clergymen, 
the abbot of Nervesa, and a canon of Vicenza, for committing 
such sins, as I think not fit to name : nor are these mentioned 
with an intent to fix a scandal upon any calling ; (for holiness is 
not tied to ecclesiastical orders, and Italy is observed to breed 
the most virtuous and most vicious men of any nation.) These 
two having been long complained of at Rome in the name of the 
state of Venice, and no satisfaction being given to the Venetians, 
they seized the persons of this abbot and canon, and committed 
them to prison. 

The justice, or injustice of such or the like power, then used 
by the Venetians, had formerly had some calm debates betwixt 
the former pope Clement the eighth, and that republic : I say, 
calm, for he did not excommunicate them ; considering (as I con- 
ceive) that in the late council of Trent it was at last (after many 
politique disturbances, and delays, and endeavours to preserve the 
pope's present power) in order to a general reformation of those 
many errors, which were in time crept into the church, declared 
by that council *, " That though discipline, and especially excom- 
munication, be one of the chief sinews of church government, 
and intended to keep men in obedience to it : for which end, it 

8 Clement the eighth.'] Ippolito Aldobrandini, pope from 7th February, 
1592, to 5th March, 1605. 
4 By that council.] Concil. Trident, sets. xrv. cap. iii. 


was declared to be very profitable ; yet, it was also declared and 
advised to be used with great sobriety and care : because expe- 
rience had informed them, that when it was pronounced unad- 
visedly, or rashly, it became more contemned than feared." And, 
though this was the advice of that council at the conclusion of it 
which was not many years before this quarrel with the Vene- 
tians ; yet this prudent, patient pope Clement dying, pope Paul 
the fifth 5 , who succeeded him (though not immediately 6 , yet in 
the same year) being a man of a much hotter temper, brought this 
difference with the Venetians 7 to a much higher contention : ob- 
jecting those late acts of that state to be a diminution of his just 
power, and limited a time of twenty-four days for their revoca- 
tion ; threatening, if he were not obeyed, to proceed to excommu- 
nication of the republic, who still offered to show both reason and 
antient custom to warrant their actions. But this pope, contrary 
to his predecessor's moderation, required absolute obedience 
without disputes. 

Thus it continued for about a year ; the pope still threatening 
excommunication, and the Venetians still answering him with 
fair speeches, and no compliance, till at last, the pope's zeal to 
the apostolic see did make him excommunicate the duke, the 
whole senate, and all their dominions ; and that done to shut up 
all their churches ; charging the whole clergy to forbear all sacred 
offices to the Venetians, till their obedience should render them 
capable of absolution. 

But this act of the pope's did but the more confirm the Vene- 
tians in their resolution not to obey him. And to that end, upon 
the hearing of the pope's interdict, they presently published by 
sound of trumpet, a proclamation to this effect : 

" That whosoever hath received from Rome any copy of a papal 
interdict, published there, as well against the law of God, as 
against the honour of this nation, shall presently render it to the 

5 Paul the fifth.} Camillo Borghese, pope from 16th May, 1 605, to 28th 
January, 1621. 

6 Not immediately.'] After the death of Clement VIII., the cardinal of 
Florence, Alessandro Ottaviano de' Medici, had been elected pope, 1st April, 
1605, and he had taken the title of Leo XL, but he died on the 27th of the 
same month. 

7 Difference with the Venetians.'] A volume might be filled merely with an 
account of what has been written on both sides respecting this celebrated 
dispute and the consequent interdict. 


council of ten, upon pain of death." And they made it loss of 
estate and nobility, but to speak in the behalf of the Jesuits. 

Then was Duado * their ambassador called home from Rome, 
and the Inquisition presently suspended by order of the state ; 
and the flood-gates being thus set open, any man that had a plea- 
sant or scoffing wit might safely vent it against the pope, either 
by free speaking, or by libels in print ; and both became very 
pleasant to the people. 

Matters thus heightened, the state advised with father Paul, a 
holy and learned frier (the author of the History of the Council 
of Trent, whose advice was, " Neither to provoke the pope, nor 
lose their own right :" he declaring publicly in print, in the name 
of the state, " That the pope was trusted to keep two keys ; one 
of prudence and the other of power : and that if they were not 
both used together, power alone is not effectual in an excommu- 

And thus these discontents and oppositions continued, till a 
report was blown abroad, that the Venetians were all turned pro- 
testants : which was believed by many, for that it was observed, 
the English ambassador was so often in conference with the 
senate, and his chaplain Mr. Bedel more often with father Paul 9 , 
whom the people did not take to be his friend : and also, for that 
the republic of Venice was known to give commission to Gregory 
Justiniano *, then their ambassador in England, to make all these 
proceedings known to the king of England, and to crave a pro- 
mise of his assistance, if need should require : and in the mean- 
time they required the king's advice and judgment ; which was 
the same that he gave to pope Clement, at his first coming to the 
crown of England ; (that pope then moving him to an union with 
the Roman church) namely, u To endeavour the calling of a free 
council, for the settlement of peace in Christendom : and, that he 
doubted not, but that the French king, and divers other princes 
would join to assist in so good a work ; and in the mean time, 
the sin of this breach, both with his, and the Venetians' 1 dominions, 
must of necessity lye at the pope's door." 

8 Was Duado. .] More correctly Duodo. Pietro Duodo was ambassador in 
England with Badoero, in 1603 : there is still extant in the British Museum 
an original letter of sir Henry Wotton, in which the circumstances here 
alluded to are given. 

9 Father Paul.'] Paolo Sarpi. 

1 Gregory Justiniano.'] Or Giorgio Giustiniani, ambassador in 1606. 


In this contention (which lasted almost two years) the pope 
grew still higher, and the Venetians more and more resolved and 
careless : still acquainting king James with their proceedings, 
which was done by the help of sir Henry Wotton, Mr. Bedel, 
and Padre Paulo, whom the Venetians did then call to be one of 
their consulters of state, and with his pen to defend their just 
cause : which was by him so performed, that the pope saw plainly, 
he had weakened his power by exceeding it, and offered the 
Venetians absolution upon very easy terms ; which the Venetians 
still slighting, did at last obtain, by that which was scarce so 
much as a shew of acknowledging it : for, they made an order, 
that in that day in which they were absolved, there should be no 
public rejoicing, nor any bonfires that night, lest the common 
people might judge, that they desired an absolution, or were ab- 
solved for committing a fault. 

These contests were the occasion of Padre Paulo's knowledge 
and interest with king James, for whose sake principally Padre 
Paulo compiled that eminent History of the remarkable Council 
of Trent ; which history was, as fast as it was written, sent in 
several sheets in letters by sir Henry Wotton, Mr. Bedel, and 
others, unto king James, and the then bishop of Canterbury, into 
England, and there first made public, both in English and in the 
universal language 2 . 

For eight years after sir Henry Wotton's going into Italy, he 
stood fair and highly valued in the king's opinion, but at last 
became much clouded by an accident, which I shall proceed to 

At his first going ambassador into Italy, as he passed through 
Germany, he stayed some days at Augusta 3 ; where having been 
in his former travels well known by many of the best note for 
learning and ingeniousness (those that are esteemed the virtuosi 
of that nation) with whom he passing an evening in merriment, 
was requested by Christopher Flecamore to write some sentence 
in his albo : (a book of white paper, which for that purpose many 
of the German gentry usually * carry about them) and sir Henry 
Wotton consenting to the motion, took an occasion from some 

" Universal language.'] Latin. 

3 Augusta.~\ Augsburg. 

1 Usually J\ In the British Museum are several hundred of these albums. 


accidental discourse of the present company, to write a pleasant 
definition of an ambassador, in these very words : 

" Legatus est vir bonus peregre missus ad mentiendum reipublicae causa." 

Which sir Henry Wotton could have been content should have 
been thus Englished : 

" An ambassador is an honest man, sent to lie abroad for the good of his 

But the word for lie (being the hinge upon which the conceit * 
was to turn) was not so exprest in Latin, as would admit (in the 
hands of an enemy especially) so fair a construction as sir Henry 
thought in English. Yet as it was, it slept quietly among other 
sentences in this albo, almost eight years, till by accident it fell 
into the hands of Jasper Scioppius, a Romanist, a man of a rest- 
less spirit, and a malicious pen : who with books against king 
James, prints this as a principle of that religion professed by the 
king, and his ambassador sir Henry Wotton, then at Venice: 
and in Venice it was presently after written in several glass win- 
dows, and spitefully declared to be sir Henry Wotton's. 

This coming to the knowledge of king James, he apprehended 
it to be such an oversight, such a weakness, or worse, in sir 
Henry Wotton, as caused the king to express much wrath 
against him : and this caused sir Henry Wotton to write two 
apologies, one to Velserus 6 (one of the chiefs of Augusta) in 
the universal language, which he caused to be printed, and given, 
and scattered in the most remarkable places both of Germany 
and Italy, as an antidote against the venomous books of Sciop- 
pius ; and another apology to king James : which were both so 
ingenious, so clear, and so choicely eloquent, that his majesty 
(who was a pure judge of it) could not forbear, at the receipt 
thereof, to declare publicly, " That sir Henry Wotton had com- 
muted sufficiently for a greater offence." 

And now, as broken bones well set become stronger, so sir 
Henry Wotton did not only recover, but was much more con- 

6 The conceit. ~\ Being a mere pun upon the term lieger, to lie or remain in 
a place, applied commonly to a resident or fixed ambassador. The word was 
used in monasteries, which had their lieger books, or books which lay open 
for entries, and it is still used in every counting-house. It is probably also 
the log book of the seamen. 

* To Velserus.'] Marc Welser, prefect of Augsburg. 


firmed in his majesty's estimation and favour than formerly he 
had been. 

And as that man of great wit and useful fancy (his friend Dr. 
Donne) gave in a will of his (a will of conceits) his reputation to 
his friends, and his industry to his foes, because from thence he 
received both : so those friends, that in this time of trial la- 
boured to excuse this facetious freedom of sir Henry Wotton's, 
were to him more dear, and by him more highly valued : and 
those acquaintance that urged this as an advantage against him, 
caused him by this error to grow both more wise, and (which is 
the best fruit error can bring forth) for the future to become 
more industriously watchful over his tongue and pen. 

I have told you a part of his employment in Italy ; where not- 
withstanding the death of his favourer, the duke Leonardo Do- 
nato, who had an undissembled affection for him, and the mali- 
cious accusation of Scioppius, yet his interest (as though it had 
been an intailed love) was still found to live and increase in all 
the succeeding dukes, during his employment to that state, which 
was almost twenty years ; all which time he studied the disposi- 
tions of those dukes, and the other consulters of state ; well 
knowing, that he who negociates a continued business, and 
neglects the study of the dispositions, usually fails in his proposed 
ends : but in this sir Henry Wotton did not fail : for by a fine 
sorting of fit presents, curious and not costly entertainments, 
always sweetened by various and pleasant discourse ; with which, 
and his choice application of stories, and his elegant delivery of 
all these, even in their Italian language, he first got, and still 
preserved such interest in the state of Venice, that it was ob- 
served (such was either his merit, or his modesty) they never 
denied him any request. 

But all this shews but his abilities, and his fitness for that 
employment : it will therefore be needful to tell the reader, what 
use he made of the interest which these procured him ; and that 
indeed was, rather to oblige others than to enrich himself; he 
still endeavouring that the reputation of the English might be 
maintained, both in the German empire and in Italy ; where many 
gentlemen whom travel had invited into that nation, received 
from him cheerful entertainments, advice for their behaviour, 
and by his interest shelter, or deliverance from those accidental 
storms of adversity which usually attend upon travel. 

And because these things may appear to the reader to be but 


generals, I shall acquaint him with two particular examples : one 
of his merciful disposition, and one of the nobleness of his mind ; 
which shall follow. 

There had been many English soldiers brought by commanders 
of their own country, to serve the Venetians for pay against the 
Turks ; and those English, having by irregularities, or improvi- 
dence, brought themselves into several gallies and prisons, sir 
Henry Wotton became a petitioner to that state for their lives 
and enlargement ; and his request was granted : so that those 
(which were many hundreds, and there made the sad examples 
of human misery, by hard imprisonment, and unpitied poverty in 
a strange nation) were by his means released, relieved, and in a 
comfortable condition sent to thank God and him for their lives 
and liberty in their own country. 

And this 1 have observed as one testimony of the compas- 
sionate nature of him, who was (during his stay in those parts) 
as a city of refuge for the distressed of this and other nations. 

And for that which I offer as a testimony of the nobleness 
of his mind, I shall make way to the reader's clearer under- 
standing of it, by telling him, that beside several other foreign 
employments, sir Henry Wotton was sent thrice ambassador f to 
the republic of Venice ; and at his last going thither, he was 
employed ambassador to several of the German princes, and more 
particularly to the emperor Ferdinando the second ; and that his 
employment to him, and those princes, was to incline them to 
equitable conditions, for the restauration of the queen of Bo- 
hemia 8 , and her descendants, to their patrimonial inheritance of 
the palatinate. 

This was by his eight months constant endeavours and at- 
tendance upon the emperor, his court and council, brought to 
a probability of a successful conclusion without blood-shed : but 
there was at that time two opposite armies in the field ; and as 
they were treating, there was a battle fought 9 ; in the managery 
whereof, there was so many miserable errors on the one side, (so 
sir Henry Wotton expresses it in a dispatch to the king) and 

^ Thrice ambassador.] In March, 1604; in 1605 (Harl. MS. 1875, art. 17, 
&c.) and 1622 (see Cabala, p. 364). 

8 Queen of Bohemia.] Elizabeth of England, daughter of James I., and 
wife of the palgrave, or elector palatine Frederic, who had forfeited his domi- 
nions by his assumption of the throne of Bohemia. 

9 Battle fouyht.] The battle of Prague, November, 1620. 


so advantageous events to the emperor, as put an end to all 
present hopes of a successful treaty : so that sir Henry, seeing 
the face of peace altered by that victory, prepared for a removal 
from that court ; and at his departure from the emperor, was so 
bold as to remember him, " That the events of every battle move 
on the unseen wheels of fortune, which are this moment up, and 
down the next : and therefore humbly advised him to use his 
victory so soberly, as still to put on thoughts of peace." Which 
advice, though it seemed to be spoke with some passion, (his 
dear mistress the queen of Bohemia being concerned in it) was 
yet taken in good part by the emperor; who replied, " That he 
would consider his advice : and though he looked on the king his 
master as an abettor of his enemy the Palsgrave ; yet for sir 
Henry himself, his behaviour had been such during the manage 
of the treaty, that he took him to be a person of much honour 
and merit, and did therefore desire him to accept of that jewel, 
as a testimony of his good opinion of him ;" which was a jewel of 
diamonds of more value than a thousand pounds. 

This jewel was received with all outward circumstances and 
terms of honour by sir Henry Wotton : but the next morning, 
at his departing from Vienna, he at his taking leave of the 
countess of Sabrina (an Italian lady, in whose house the emperor 
had appointed him to be lodged, and honourably entertained) 
acknowledged her merits, and besought her to accept of that 
jewel, as a testimony of his gratitude for her civilities ; presenting 
her with the same that was given him by the emperor : which 
being suddenly discovered, and told to the emperor, was by him 
taken for a high affront, and sir Henry Wotton told so by a 
messenger. To which he replied, " That though he received it 
with thankfulness, yet he found in himself an indisposition to be 
the better for any gift that came from an enemy to his royal 
mistress the queen of Bohemia;" for so she was pleased he 
should always call her. 

Many other of his services to his prince, and this nation, might 
be insisted upon : as namely, his procurations of privileges and 
courtesies with the German princes, and the republic of Venice, 
for the English merchants ; and what he did by direction of king 
James with the Venetian state, concerning the bishop of Spalato's 
return l to the church of Rome. But for the particulars of these 

1 The bishop of Spalato's return.'] See M. Ant. de Dominis archbishop of 


and many more that I meant to make known, I want a view of 
some papers that might inform me (his late majesty^s letter office 
having now suffered* a strange alienation) and indeed I want 
time too, for the printer's press stays for what is written : so that 
I must haste to bring sir Henry Wotton in an instant from Venice 
to London, leaving the reader to make up what is defective in 
this place by the small supplement of the inscription under his 
arms, which he left at all those houses where he rested, or lodged, 
when he returned from his last embassy into England. 

" Henricus Wottonius Anglo-Cantianus, Thomae optimi viri 
filius natu minimus, a serenissimo Jacobo I. Mag. Britt. rege, 
in equestrem titulum adscitus, ejusdemque ter ad rempublicam 
Venetam legatus ordinarius, semel ad confoederatarum provin- 
ciarum ordines in Juliacensi negotio ; bis ad Carolum Emanuel, 
Sabaudise ducem ; semel ad unitos superioris Germanise principes 
in Conventu Heilbrunensi ; postremo ad archiducem Leopoldum, 
ducem Wittembergensem, civitates imperiales, Argentinam, 
Ulmamque, et ipsum Eomanorum imperatorem Ferdinandum 
secundum, legatus extraordinarius, tandem hoc didicit, 

" Animas fieri sapientiores quiescendo." 

To London he came the year before 8 king James died ; who 
having for the reward of his foreign service, promised him the 
reversion of an office which was fit to be turned into present 
money, which he wanted, for a supply of his present necessities, 
also granted him the reversion of the master of the rolls place, 
if he out-lived charitable sir Julius Caesar, who then possessed it, 
and then was grown so old, that he was said to be kept alive 
beyond nature's course, by the prayers of those many poor which 
he daily relieved. 

Spalato, his shif tings in Religion. London, printed by John Bill, A.D. 1624 ; 
Heylin's Life of archbishop Laud, p. 107 9; Banvick's Life of bishop 
Morton, p. 858 ; Wood's Annals, vol. ii. p. 328, &c. 

A copy of the first tract, as we learn from the Address to the Reader, 
" was by his majesty's special commandment sent to sir H. Wotton, his 
majesty's ambassador ordinary with the state of Venice, that he might, as 
occasion served, inform that state concerning the true carriage of that busi- 
ness with the archbishop." 

8 Now suffered. ] This Life was first published in the year 1651; a date 
which sufficiently accounts for the tone of expression in this passage. 

3 Year before.] 1624. 


But, these were but in hope ; and his condition required a 
present support. For in the beginning of these employments he 
sold to his elder brother the lord Wotton, the rent-charge left 
by his good father, and (which is worse) was now at his return 
indebted to several persons, whom he was not able to satisfy, but 
by the king's payment of his arrears due for his foreign employ- 
ments. He had brought into England many servants, of which 
some were German and Italian artists. This was part of his 
condition, who had many times hardly sufficient to supply the 
occasions of the day ; (for it may by no means be said of his 
providence, as himself said of sir Philip Sidney's wit, That it was 
the very measure of congruity) he being always so careless of 
money, as though our Saviour's words, Care not for to-morrow, 
were to be literally understood. 

But it pleased the God of providence, that in this juncture of 
time, the provostship of his majesty's college of Eton became 
void by the death of Mr. Thomas Murray 4 , for which there were 
(as the place deserved) many earnest and powerful suiters 5 to the 
king. And sir Henry, who had for many years (like Sisyphus) 
rolled the restless stone of a state employment, knowing experi- 
mentally, that the great blessing of sweet content was not to be 
found in multitudes of men or business ; and that a college was 
the fittest place to nourish holy thoughts, and to afford rest both 
to his body and mind, which his age (being now almost threescore 
years) seemed to require, did therefore use his own, and the 
interest of all his friends to procure that place. By which means, 
and quitting the king of his promised reversionary offices, and by 
a piece of honest policy (which I have not time to relate) he got 
a grant of it 6 from his majesty. 

And this was a fair satisfaction to his mind : but money was 
wanting 7 to furnish him with those necessaries which attend 

4 Mr. Thomas Murray. ~\ Who had succeeded sir Henry Savile as provost. 

5 Powerful suiters.~\ Two of these were lord Bacon and sir Wm. Becher. 
See Bacon's Works, vol. vi. p. 345, 6. edit. 1803. Sir William Becher asserts, 
in a letter to the duke of Buckingham, that he had from the king an express 
promise of the place. Amongst the other candidates were sir Albertus 
Morton, sir Dudley Carleton, and sir Robert Ayton. 

A grant of it.'] He was instituted 26th July, 1624. 

7 Money was wanting.'] " When he went to the election at Eton, soon after 
his being made provost, he was so ill provided, that the fellows of the college 
were obliged to furnish his bare walls, and whatever else was wanting." See 
Birch's Letters of Lord Chancellor Bacon, p. 338, note. 


removes, and a settlement in such a place ; and, to procure that, 
he wrote to his old friend Mr. Nicholas Pey, for his assistance ; 
of which Nicholas Pey, I shall here say a little, for the clearing 
of some passages that I shall mention hereafter. 

He was in his youth a clerk, or in some such way, a servant to 
the lord Wotton, sir Henry^s brother ; and by him, when he was 
comptroller of the king's houshold, was made a great officer in 
his majesty's house. This, and other favours being conferred upon 
Mr. Pey (in whom there was a radical honesty) were always 
thankfully acknowledged by him, and his gratitude exprest by a 
willing and unwearied serviceableness to that family even till his 
death. To him sir Henry Wotton wrote, to use all his interest 
at court, to procure five hundred pounds of his arrears, (for less 
would not settle him in the college) and the want of such a sum 
wrinkled Ms face with care (it was his own expression) ; and that 
money being procured, he should the next day after find him in 
his college, and Invidice remedium writ over his study-door. 

This money, being part of his arrears, was by his own, and the 
help of honest Nicholas Pey's interest in court, quickly procured 
him ; and he as quickly in the college ; the place where indeed 
his happiness then seemed to have its beginning : the college 
being to his mind as a quiet harbour to a sea-faring man after a 
tempestuous voyage ; where, by the bounty of the pious founder *, 
his very food and raiment were plentifully provided for him in 
kind, and more money than enough ; where he was freed from all 
corroding cares, and seated on such a rock, as the waves of 
want could not probably shake; where he might sit in a calm 9 , 
and looking down, behold the busy multitude turmoilod and 
tossed in a tempestuous sea of trouble and dangers ! And (as 
sir William Davenant has happily exprest the like of another 

" Laugh at the graver business of the state, 
Which speaks men rather wise than fortunate." 

Being thus settled according to the desires of his heart, his 

8 Where, by the bounty of the pious founder."] 

" Where grateful science still adores 

Her Henry's holy shade." Gray. 

9 In a calm.'] 

Suave, mari magno turbantibus aequora ventis, 
E terra magnum alterius spec tare laborem. 

Lucretius, ii. 1. 


first study was the statutes of the college : by which he conceived 
himself bound to enter into holy orders, which he did ; being 
made deacon l with all convenient speed : shortly after which 
time, as he came in his surplice from the church-service, an old 
friend, a person of quality, met him so attired, and joyed him of 
his new habit ; to whom sir Henry Wotton replied, " I thank 
God and the king, by whose goodness I now am in this condi- 
tion ; a condition, which that emperor Charles the fifth seemed 
to approve : who, after so many remarkable victories, when his 
glory was great in the eyes of all men, freely gave up his crown, 
and the many cares that attended it, to Philip his son, making a 
holy retreat to a cloisteral life, where he might by devout medita- 
tions consult with God (which the rich or busy men seldom do) 
and have leisure both to examine the errors of his life past, and 
prepare for that great day, wherein all flesh must make an 
account of their actions. And after a kind of tempestuous life, I 
now have the like advantage from him, that makes the out-goings 
of the morning to praise him ; even from my God, whom I daily 
magnify for this particular mercy, of an exemption from business, 
a quiet mind, and a liberal maintenance, even in this part of my 
life, when my age and infirmities seem to sound me a retreat 
from the pleasures of this world, and invite me to contemplation, 
in which I have ever taken the greatest felicity."" 

And now to speak a little of the employment of his time in the 
college. After his customary public devotions, his use was to 
retire into his study, and there to spend some hours in reading 
the Bible, and authors in divinity, closing up his meditations with 
private prayer ; this was, for the most part, his employment 
in the forenoon. But, when he was once sat to dinner, then 
nothing but cheerful thoughts possessed his mind ; and those 
still increased by constant company at his table, of such persons 
as brought thither additions both of learning and pleasure ; but 
some part of most days was usually spent in philosophical con- 
clusions. Nor did he forget his innate pleasure of angling 2 , 

1 Made deacon."] A.D. 1627. Upon this occasion he wrote an interesting 
letter to the king, which is preserved in his Remains, p. 327, edit. 1685. His 
design was to have received orders at the hands of Williams, bishop of Lin- 
coln, visitor of his college ; but in that he was disappointed, by a sudden 
command from the king, that Williams should quit London. See Remains, 
p. 326. 

2 Innate pleasure of angling .] "My next and last example" (of the dear 



which he would usually call, his idle time, not idly spmt ; 
saying often, he would rather live five May months, than forty 

He was a great lover of his neighbours, and a bountiful 
entertainer of them very often at his table, where his meat was 
choice, and his discourse better. 

He was a constant cherisher of all those youths in that school, 
in whom he found either a constant diligence, or a genius that 
prompted them to learning, for whose encouragement, he was 
(beside many other things of necessity and beauty) at the charge 
of setting up in it two rows of pillars, on which he caused to be 
choicely drawn, the pictures of divers of the most famous Greek 
and Latin historians, poets, and orators : persuading them not to 
neglect rhetoric, because almighty God has left mankind affec- 
tions to be wrought upon : and he would often say, That none 
despised eloquence, but such dull souls as were not capable of it. 
He would also often make choice of some observations out of 
those historians and poets: and would never leave the school 

lovers and great practisers of angling, being at the same time eminent for 
learning) " shall be that undervaluer of money, the late provost of Eton 
college, sir Henry Wotton, a man with whom I have often fished and con- 
versed ; a man whose foreign employments in the service of this nation, and 
whose experience, learning, wit, and cheerfulness, made his company to be 
esteemed one of the delights of mankind. This man, whose very approba- 
tion of angling were sufficient to convince any modest censurer of it, was 
also a most dear lover, and a frequent practiser of my art : of which he would 
say, ' 'Twas an employment for his idle time, which was then not idly spent : 
for angling was, after tedious study, a rest to his mind, a cheerer of his spirits, 
a diverter of sadness, a calmer of unquiet thoughts, a moderator of passions, 
a procurer of contentedness ; and that it begat habits of peace and patience 
in those that professed and practised it. Indeed, my friend, you will find 
angling to be like the virtue of humility, which has a calmness of spirit, and 
a world of other blessings attending it.' 

" Sir, this was the saying of that learned man. And I do easily believe 
that peace and patience, and a calm content, did cohabit in the chearful heart 
of sir Henry Wotton, because I know that when he was beyond seventy 
years of age, he made this description of a part of the present pleasure that 
possessed him, as he sat quietly in a summer's evening on a bank a fishing. 
It is a description of the spring; which, because it glided as soft and swet-tly 
from his pen, as that river does at this time by which it was then made, I 
shall repeat it to you. 

" This day dame Nature seemed in love, Sec. &c. 

" These were the thoughts that then possessed the undisturbed mind of sir 
Henry Wotton." Walton's Compleat Angler, p. 32, edit. 1772. 


without dropping some choice Greek or Latin apophthegm or 
sentence, that might be worthy of a room in the memory of a 
growing scholar. 

He was pleased constantly to breed up one or more hopeful 
youths, which he picked out of the school, and took into his own 
domestic care, and to attend him at his meals ; out of whose 
discourse and behaviour, he gathered observations for the better 
completing of his intended work of education : of which, by his 
still striving to make the whole better, he lived to leave but part 
to posterity. 

He was a great enemy to wrangling disputes of religion, con- 
cerning which I shall say a little, both to testify that, and to shew 
the readiness of his wit. 

Having at his being in Eome made acquaintance with a plea- 
sant priest, who invited him one evening to hear their vesper 
music at church, the priest seeing sir Henry stand obscurely in a 
corner, sends to him by a boy of the quire this question, writ in a 
small piece of paper, " Where was your religion to be found 
before Luther V To which question sir Henry presently under- 
writ, " My religion was to be found then, where your's is not to 
be found now, in the written word of God." 

The next vesper, sir Henry went purposely to the same church, 
and sent one of the quire boys with this question to his honest 
pleasant friend, the priest ; " Do you believe all those many thou- 
sands of poor Christians were damned that were excommunicated, 
because the pope, and the duke of Venice, could not agree about 
their temporal power, even those poor Christians that knew not 
why they quarrelled? Speak your conscience." To which he 
under- writ in French, " Monsieur, excusez moi." 

To one that asked him, " Whether a papist may be saved?" 
he replied, " You may be saved without knowing that. Look to 

To another, whose earnestness exceeded his knowledge, and 
was still railing against the Papists, he gave this advice, " Pray 
sir, forbear till you have studied the points better ; for the wise 
Italians have this proverb 3 ; He that understands amiss, concludes 
worse : and take heed of thinking, The farther you go from the 
church of Rome, the nearer you are to God 4 ." 

3 This proverb .] "Chi mal intende peggio decide." 

4 The nearer you are to God.~\ So Bishop Horsley. " Take especial care, 
before you aim your shafts at Calvinism, that you know what is Calvinism 

H 2 


And to another that spake indiscreet and bitter words against 
Arminius, I heard him reply to this purpose : 

" In my travel towards Venice, as I past through Germany, I 
rested almost a year at Leyden, where I entered into an acquaint- 
ance with Arminius (then the professor of divinity in that univer- 
sity) a man much talked of in this age, which is made up of 
opposition and controversy : and indeed, if I mistake not Armi- 
nius in his expressions (as so weak a brain as mine is may easily 
do) then I know I differ from him in some points ; yet I profess 
my judgment of him to be, that he was a man of most rare learn- 
ing, and I knew him to be of a most strict life, and of a most 
meek spirit. And that he was so mild, appears by his proposals 
to our master Perkins 5 of Cambridge, from whose book, of the 
Order and Causes of Salvation (which was first writ in Latin) 
Arminius took the occasion of writing some queries to him con- 
cerning the consequents of his doctrine ; intending them (it is 
said) to come privately to Mr. Perkins"* own hands, and to receive 
from him a like private and a like loving answer : but Mr. Per- 
kins died before those queries came to him ; and it is thought 
Arminius meant them to die with him ; for though he lived long 
after, I have heard he forbore to publish them (but since his 
death, his sons did not). And it is pity, if God had been so 
pleased, that Mr. Perkins did not live to see, consider, and answer 
those proposals himself ; for he was also of a most meek spirit, 
and of great and sanctified learning. And though since their 
deaths, many of high parts and piety have undertaken to clear 
the controversy, yet, for the most part, they have rather satisfied 
themselves, than convinced the dissenting party. And doubtless, 
many middle- witted men, (which yet may mean well) many scholars 
that are not in the highest form for learning, (which yet may 
preach well) men that are but preachers, and shall never know, 
till they come to heaven, where the questions stick betwixt Ar- 
minius and the church of England, (if there be any) will yet in 

and what is not : that in that mass of doctrine, which it is of late become the 
fashion to abuse under the name of Calvinism, you can distinguish with cer- 
tainty between that part of it which is nothing better than Calvinism, and 
that which belongs to our common Christianity and the general faith of the 
reformed churches, lest when you mean only to fall foul of Calvinism, you 
should unwarily attack something more sacred and of higher origin." Charge 
at St. Asaph, 1806, p. 26. 

5 Master Perkins.] William Perkins. 


this world be tampering with, and thereby perplexing the con- 
troversy, and do therefore justly fall under the reproof 6 of St. 
Jude, for being busy-bodies, and for meddling with things they 

And here it offers itself (I think not unfitly) to tell the reader, 
that a friend of sir Henry Wotton's, being designed for the em- 
ployment of an ambassador, came to Eton, and requested from 
him some experimental rules for his prudent and safe carriage in 
his negociations ; to whom he smilingly gave this for an infallible 
aphorism ; " That, to be in safety himself, and serviceable to his 
country, he should always, and upon all occasions speak the 
truth (it seems a state-paradox) for, says sir Henry Wotton, 
you shall never be believed ; and by this means, your truth will 
secure yourself, if you shall ever be called to any account ; and it 
will also put your adversaries (who will still hunt counter) to a 
loss in all their disquisitions and undertakings." 

Many more of this nature might be observed, but they must 
be laid aside ; for I shall here make a little stop, and invite the 

6 Fall under the reproof.'] There were not wanting occasionally a few other 
learned men, who, in these turbulent times, had wisdom enough to discourage 
the promiscuous agitation of these thorny and perplexed controversies. 
Among others who might be cited, we shall be contented to refer to the 
example of Dr. Richard Field, author of the Five Books of the Church, who is 
said to have been the intimate friend of Richard Hooker ; and whose writings 
display no small portion of the meekness of spirit, the depth of thought, and 
the learning of that admirable man. 

"He did not like" (as his son informs us) "so much disputing about 
those high points of predestination and reprobation, which have so much 
troubled the church of late years, and in ancient times ; about which the 
Dominicans and the Jesuites, the Lutherans and the Calvinists, are so much 
divided. He did not like that men should be so busy in determining what 
God decrees in heaven, whose counsels are unsearchable, and whose ways are 
past finding out. 

" Being at Oxford at the act, when doctor Abbot, who was then regius 
professor, and doctor of the chair, first began to read upon those points which 
are commonly called the Arminian points ; after he had heard him, being 
returned unto his lodging, he was very much offended at it, and said unto 
doctor Bostock, who was then present with him, You are a young man, and 
may live to see great troubles in the church of England, occasioned by these dis- 
putes. Oxford hath hitherto been free from these disputes, though Cambridge 
hath been much disquieted with them. They are disputes which have troubled 
the peace of the church above nine hundred years already, and will not now be 
ended. In points of such extreme difficulty he did not think fit to be too 
positive in defining any thing ; to turn matters of opinion into matters of 
faith." Short Memorials concerning the Life of Doctor Richard Field, written 
by his Son, p. 21. Compare Barwick's Life of Bishop Morton, p. 153. 


reader to look back with me, whilst, according to my promise, I 
shall say a little of sir Albertus Morton, and Mr. William Bedel, 
whom I formerly mentioned. 

I have told you that are my reader, that at sir Henry Wotton's 
first going ambassador into Italy, his cousin, sir Albert Morton, 
went his secretary : and am next to tell you, that sir Albertus 
died secretary of state to our late king ; but cannot, am not able 
to express the sorrow that possest sir Henry Wotton at his first 
hearing the news that sir Albertus was by death lost to him and 
this world ; and yet, the reader may partly guess by these follow- 
ing expressions ; the first in a letter to his Nicholas Pey, of which 
this that folio weth is a part. 

" And my dear Nick, when I had been here almost a fort- 
night, in the midst of my great contentment, I received notice of 
sir Albertus Morton's departure out of this world, who was 
dearer to me, than mine own being in it. What a wound it is 
to my heart, you that knew him, and know me, will easily believe : 
but, our Creator's will must be done, and unrepiningly received 
by his own creatures, who is the Lord of all nature, and of all 
fortune, when he taketh to himself now one, and then another, 
till that expected day, wherein it shah 1 please him to dissolve the 
whole, and wrap up even the heaven itself as a scroll of parch- 
ment. This is the last philosophy that we must study upon 
earth ; let us therefore that yet remain here, as our days and 
friends waste, reinforce our love to each other ; which of all vir- 
tues, both spiritual and moral, hath the highest privilege, because 
death itself cannot end it. And my good Nick," &c. 

This is a part of his sorrow thus exprest to his Nick Pey ; the 
other part is in this following elegy, of which the reader may 
safely conclude, it was too hearty to be dissembled. 


Silence in truth would speak my sorrow best, 

For deepest wounds can least their feeling tell ; 
Yet let me borrow from mine own unrest, 

A time to bid him whom I lov'd farewell. 

Oh, my unhappy lines ! you that before 

Have serv'd my youth to vent some wanton cries, 

And now congeal'd with grief, can scarce implore 
Strength to accent, HERE MY ALBERTUS LIES. 


This is that sable stone, this is the cave 

And womb of earth, that doth his corpse embrace ; 

While others sing his praise, let me engrave 
These bleeding numbers to adorn the place. 

Here will I paint the characters of woe ; 

Here will I pay my tribute to the dead ; 
And here my faithful tears in showers shall flow 

To humanize the flints on which I tread. 

Where though I mourn my matchless loss alone, 
And none between my weakness judge and me ; 

Yet even these pensive walls allow my moan, 
Whose doleful echoes to my plaints agree. 

But is he gone ! and live I rhyming here, 

As if some muse would listen to my lay ? 
When all distun'd sit waiting for their dear, 

And bathe the banks where he was wont to play. 

Dwell then in endless bliss with happy souls, 
Discharged from nature's and from fortune's trust, 

Whilst on this fluid globe my hour-glass rolls, 
And runs the rest of my remaining dust. 

H. W. 

This concerning his sir Albertus Morton. 

And for what I shall say concerning Mr. William Bedel I must 
prepare the reader by telling him, that when king James sent sir 
Henry Wotton ambassador to the state of Venice, he sent also 
an ambassador to the king of France 7 , and another to the king of 
Spain 8 ; with the ambassador of France went Joseph Hall (late 
bishop of Norwich) whose many and useful works speak his great 
merit : with the ambassador of Spain went James Wadsworth ; 
and with sir Henry Wotton went William Bedel. 

These three chaplains to these three ambassadors, were all bred 
in one university, all of one f college, all beneficed in one diocese, 
and all most dear and entire friends : but in Spain Mr. Wads- 
worth met with temptations 9 , or reasons, such as were so power - 

7 To the king of France.] Sir Thomas Parry. 

8 To the king of Spain.] Sir Charles Cornwallis. 
1 Emmanuel College, in Cambridge. 

9 Met with temptations.] We have the following account written by his son. 
" At his first arrival " (in Spain) " the Jesuits held with him a subtle dispute 
about the antiquity and the universality of the Church of Rome, which they 
make their preface to all seducements; his grand opposers being Joseph 


ful, as to persuade him (who of the three, was formerly observed 
to be the most averse to that religion that calls itself Catholic) 
to disclaim himself a member of the church of England, and de- 
clare himself for the church of Rome ; discharging himself of his 
attendance on the ambassador, and betaking himself to a monas- 
terial life ; in which he lived very regularly, and so died. 

When Dr. Hall (the late bishop of Norwich) came into Eng- 
land, he wrote to Mr. Wadsworth (it is the first epistle in his 
printed decads) to persuade his return, or to shew the reason of 
his apostacy. The letter seemed to have in it many sweet ex- 
pressions of love ; and yet there was in it some expression that 
was so unpleasant to Mr. Wadsworth, that he chose rather to 
acquaint his old friend Mr. Bedel with his motives ; by which 
means there past betwixt Mr. Bedel and Mr. Wadsworth divers 
letters, which be extant in print *, and did well deserve it ; for in 
them there seems to be a controversy, not of religion only, but 
who should answer each other with most love and meekness: 
which I mention the rather, because it too seldom falls out to be 
so in a book-war. 

Cresswell and Henry Walpole, two the most expert politicians of our nation, 
that then maintained the state of the triple crown; whose understanding 
nevertheless would not prove captive either to the subtilest arguments, or 
most alluring promises. The embassador seeing how wisely he quitted him- 
self, sent letters to his majesty informing him how learnedly he was accom- 
panied, Meanwhile the Jesuits perceiving how little they prevailed, used 
other illusions stronger than their arguments, even strange apparitions of 
miracles : amongst others, the miracle which they pretend to be true to have 
happened to the eldest son of the lord Wotton at his death, in the city Valla- 
dolid, where a crucifix framed him this articulate sound, Now forsake your 
heresy, or else you are damned; whereupon the young lord and my father 
became proselytes to their juggling religion, the report whereof not long after 
became a load-stone also to the old lord Wotton his father, with many others, 
to draw them to popish idolatry. And so my father, leaving the embassador's 
house privately, and discarding his wife and children, and fortunes in Eng- 
land, was conducted forthwith by the means of father Cresswell to the 
university of Salamanca, whereat the next day after his arrival, he was car- 
ried to the bishop's, then inquisitor's, house, where he was admitted with no 
little joy to their church ; where he prostrating himself on the ground, and 
the inquisitor putting, as their custom is, his right foot on his head, said 
with a loud voice, Here I crush the head of heresy ; the which ceremony and 
others ended, after a month's abode in the said university, he passed with 
Cresswell to the court of Madrid." English Spanish Pilgrim, p. 2, 3. 

1 Extant in print.] They were printed by (bishop) Burnet, at the close of 
his Life of Bishop Bedel, in the year 1685. 


There is yet a little more to be said of Mr. Bedel, for the 
greatest part of which the reader is referred to this following 
letter of sir Henry Wotton's, writ to our late king Charles the 

" May it please your most gracious majesty, 

" Having been informed that persons have, by the good wishes 
of the archbishop of Armagh, been directed hither, with a most 
humble petition unto your majesty, that you will be pleased to 
make Mr. William Bedel (now resident upon a small benefice in 
Suffolk) governor of your college at Dublin, for the good of that 
society ; and myself being required to render unto your majesty 
some testimony of the said William Bedel, who was long my 
chaplain at Venice, in the time of my first employment there ; I 
am bound in all conscience and truth (so far as your majesty will 
vouchsafe to accept my poor judgment) to affirm of him, that I 
think hardly a fitter man for that charge could have been pro- 
pounded unto your majesty in your whole kingdom, for singular 
erudition and piety, conformity to the rites of the church, and 
zeal to advance the cause of God, wherein his travels abroad 
were not obscure, in the time of the excommunication of the 

For it may please your majesty to know, that this is the 
man whom Padre Paulo took, I may say, into his very soul, with 
whom he did communicate the inwardest thoughts of his heart, 
from whom he professed to have received more knowledge in all 
divinity, both scholastical and positive, than from any that he had 
ever practised in his days ; of which all the passages were well 
known to the king your father, of most blessed memory. And 
so with your majesty's good favour, I will end this needless office : 
for the general fame of his learning, his life, and Christian tem- 
per, and those religious labours which himself hath dedicated to 
your majesty, do better describe him than I am able. 

" Your majesty's 
" Most humble and faithful servant, 

" H. WOTTON." 

To this letter I shall add this ; that he was (to the great joy of 
sir Henry Wotton) made governor of the said college ; and that 
g after a fair discharge of his duty and trust there, he was thence 

s August, 1627. 


removed to be bishop of Kilmore h . In both which places his life 
was so holy as seemed to equal the primitive Christians ; for as 
they, so he kept all the ember-weeks, observed (beside his private 
devotions) the canonical hours of prayer very strictly, and so he 
did all the feasts and fast-days of his mother, the church of Eng- 
land ; to which I may add, that his patience and charity were 
both such as shewed his affections were set upon things that are 
above ; for indeed his whole life brought forth the fruits of the 
spirit, there being in him such a remarkable meekness, that as 
St. Paul advised his Timothy in the election of a bishop (1 Tim. 
iii. 7.) That he have a good report of those that be without ; so had 
he ; for those that were without, even those that in point of reli- 
gion were of the Romish persuasion, (of which there were very 
many in his diocese) did yet (such is the power of visible piety) 
ever look upon him with respect and reverence ; and testified it 
by concealing and safe protecting him from death in the late hor- 
rid rebellion in Ireland, when the fury of the wild Irish knew no 
distinction of persons ; and yet there and then he was protected 
and cherished by those of a contrary persuasion ; and there and 
then he died, not by violence or misusage, but by grief, in a quiet 
prison (1629). And with him was lost many of his learned wri- 
tings, which were thought worthy of preservation ; and amongst 
the rest was lost the Bible, which by many years labour, and con- 
ference, and study, he had translated into the Irish tongue, with 
an intent to have printed it for public use. 

More might be said 2 of Mr. Bedel, who (I told the reader) 
was sir Henry Wotton's first chaplain ; and much of his second 
chaplain, Isaac Bargrave 3 , doctor in divinity, and the late learned 
and hospitable dean of Canterbury ; as also of the merit of many 
others, that had the happiness to attend sir Henry in his foreign 
employments : but the reader may think that in this digression I 
have already carried him too far from Eton college, and tln-iv- 
fore I shall lead him back as gently and as orderly as I may to that 
place, for a further conference concerning sir Henry Wotton. 

Sir Henry Wotton had proposed to himself, before he entered 
into his collegiate life, to write the Life of Martin Luther; and 

* Sept. 3, 1629. 

2 More might be said.'] See Life of William Bedel, D.D. bishop of Kilmore, 
in Ireland, AD. 1685, written by bishop Burnet. 

Isaac BargraveJ] Of whom there is a life in Todd's Account of the Deans 
of Canterbury. 


in it, the History of the Reformation, as it was carried on in 
Germany : for the doing of which he had many advantages by 
his several embassies into those parts, and his interest in the 
several princes of the empire, by whose means he had access to 
the records of all the Hans Towns, and the knowledge of many 
secret passages that fell not under common view ; and in these 
he had made a happy progress, as was well known to his worthy 
friend doctor Duppa, the late reverend bishop of Salisbury ; but 
in the midst of this design, his late majesty king Charles the first, 
that knew the value of sir Henry Wotton's pen, did by a persua- 
sive loving violence (to which may be added a promise of 5001. a 
year) force him to lay Luther aside, and betake himself to write 
the History of England, in which he proceeded to write some 
short characters of a few kings, as a foundation upon which he 
meant to build ; but, for the present, meant to be more large in 
the story of Henry the sixth, the founder of that college in which 
he then enjoyed all the worldly happiness of his present being ; 
but sir Henry died in the midst of this undertaking, and the 
footsteps of his labours are not recoverable by a more than com- 
mon diligence. 

This is some account both of his inclination, and the employ- 
ment of his time in the college, where he seemed to have his 
youth renewed by a continual conversation with that learned 
society, and a daily recourse of other friends of choicest breeding 
and parts ; by which that great blessing of a cheerful heart was 
still maintained, he being always free, even to the last of his days, 
from that peevishness which usually attends age. 

And yet his mirth was sometimes damped by the remembrance 
of divers old debts, partly contracted in his foreign employments, 
for which his just arrears due from the king would have made 
satisfaction; but being still delayed with court promises, and 
finding some decays of health, he did about two years before his 
death, out of a Christian desire that none should be a loser by 
him, make his last will ; concerning which a doubt still remains, 
namely, whether it discovered more holy wit or conscionable 
policy ? But there is no doubt but that his chief design was a 
Christian endeavour that his debts might be satisfied. 

And that it may remain as such a testimony and a legacy to 
those that loved him, I shall here impart it to the reader, as it 
was found writ with his own hand. 

" In the name of God almighty and all-merciful, I Henry 


Wotton, provost of his majesty's college by Eton, being mindful 
of mine own mortality, which the sin of our first parents did 
bring upon all flesh, do, by this last will and testament thus dis- 
pose of myself and the poor things I shall leave in this world. 
My soul I bequeath to the immortal God my maker, father of our 
Lord Jesus Christ, my blessed redeemer and mediator, through 
his all-sole sufficient satisfaction for the sins of the whole world, 
and efficient for his elect, in the number of whom I am one by 
his mere grace, and thereof most unremoveably assured by his 
holy Spirit, the true eternal comforter. My body I bequeath to 
the earth, if I shall end my transitory days at or near Eton, to 
be buried in the chapel of the said college, as the fellows shall 
dispose thereof, with whom I have lived (my God knows) in all 
loving affection ; or if I shall die near Bocton Malherb, in the 
county of Kent, then I wish to be laid in that parish church, as 
near as may be to the sepulchre of my good father, expecting a 
joyful resurrection with him in the day of Christ."" 

After this account of his faith, and this surrender of his soul 
to that God that inspired it, and this direction for the disposal of 
his body, he proceeded to appoint that his executors should lay 
over his grave a marble stone, plain, and not costly : and consi- 
dering that time moulders even marble to dust, (for monuments i 
themselves must die) therefore did he (waving the common way) 
think fit rather to preserve his name (to which the son of Sirac 
adviseth all men) by a useful apophthegm, than by a large enume- 
ration of his descent or merits (of both which he might justly 
have boasted) but he was content to forget them, and did choose 
only this prudent, pious sentence, to discover his disposition and 
preserve his memory. 

It was directed by him to be thus inscribed : 

Hie jacet hujus sententiae primus author, 


Nomen alias quaere. 
Which may be Englished thus : 

Here lies the first author of this sentence, 


Inquire his name elsewhere. 

1 " Quandoquidem data sunt ipsis quoque fata sepulchris." Juv. x. 145. 
4 Disputandi pruritus.] In a Panegyric addressed to king Charles I. on his 


And if any shall object, as I think some have, that sir 
Henry Wotton was not the first author of this sentence ; but 
that this, or a sentence like it, was long before his time ; to him 
I answer, that Solomon says, Nothing can be spoken, that hath not 
been spofcen ; for there is no new thing under the sun. But grant, 
that in his various reading, he had met with this, or a like sen- 
tence ; yet reason mixt with charity should persuade all readers 
to believe, that sir Henry Wotton's mind was then so fixed on 
that part of the communion of saints which is above, that an holy 
lethargy did surprise his memory. For doubtless, if he had not 
believed himself to be the first author of what he said, he was too 
prudent first to own, and then expose it to the public view, and 
censure of every critic. And questionless, it will be charity in all 
readers, to think his mind was then so fixed on heaven, that a 
holy zeal did transport him : and that in this sacred ecstasy, his 
thoughts were then only of the church triumphant (into which he 
daily expected his admission). And that almighty God was then 
pleased to make him a prophet, to tell the church militant, and 
particularly that part of it in this nation, where the weeds of con- 
troversy grow to be daily both more numerous, and more de- 
structive to humble piety : and where men have consciences that 
boggle at ceremonies, and yet scruple not to speak and act such 
sins as the ancient humble Christians believed to be a sin to think : 
and where, as our reverend Hooker says, " Former simplicity, and 
softness of spirit, is not now to be found, because, zeal hath 
drowned charity, and skill meekness :" it will be good to think 
that these sad changes have proved this epitaph to be a useful 
caution unto us of this nation ; and the sad effects thereof in 
Germany have proved it to be a mournful truth. 

return from Scotland, A.D. 1633, written in Latin, and translated by a friend, 
sir Henry thus expresses himself: 

" There were hatched abroad some years ago, or perhaps raked up out of 
antiquity, certain controversies about high points of the Creed, which having 
likewise flown over to us, (as flames of wit are easily diffused) least hereabout 
also both pulpits and pews might run to heat and public disturbance, your 
majesty, with most laudable temper, by proclamation suppressed on both 
sides all manner of debates. Others may think what pleaseth them ; in my 
opinion (if I may have pardon for the phrase) The itch of disputing will prove 
the scab of churches. I shall relate what I have chanced more than once to 
observe : two, namely, arguing about some subject so eagerly till either of 
them, transported by heat of contention, from one thing to another, they both 
at length had lost first their charity, and then also the truth." Remains, 
p. H7. 


This by way of observation concerning his epitaph : the rest of 
his will follows in his own words. 

" Further, I the said Henry Wotton, do constitute and ordain 
to be joint executors of this my last will and testament, my two 
grand-nephews, Albert Morton second son to sir Robert Morton 
knight, late deceased, and Thomas Bargrave, eldest son to Dr. 
Bargrave, dean of Canterbury, husband to my right virtuous and 
only niece '. And I do pray the aforesaid Dr. Bargrave, and Mr. 
Nicholas Pey, my most faithful and chosen friends, together witli 
Mr. John Harrison one of the fellows of Eton college, best 
acquainted with my books and pictures, and other utensils, to be 
supervisors of this my last will and testament. And I do pray 
the foresaid Dr. Bargrave and Mr. Nicholas Pey, to be solicitors 
for such arrearages as shall appear due unto me from his majesty's 
exchequer at the time of my death ; and to assist my fore-named 
executors in some reasonable snd conscientious satisfaction of my 
creditors, and discharge of my legacies now specified ; or, that 
shall be hereafter added unto this my testament, by any codicil 
or schedule, or left in the hands, or in any memorial with the 
aforesaid Mr. John Harrison. And first, to my most dear sove- 
reign and master of incomparable goodness (in whose gracious 
opinion I have ever had some portion, as far as the interest of a 
plain and honest man) I leave four pictures at large of those dukes 
of Venice *, in whose time I was there employed, with their names 
on the back-side, which hang in my great ordinary dining-room, 
done after the life by Edoardo Fialetto. Likewise a table 7 of the 
Venetian college, where ambassadors had their audience, hanuin^ 
over the mantle of the chimney in the said room, done by the 
same hand, which containeth a draught in little, well resembling 
the famous duke Leonardo Donato, in a time which needed a 
wise and constant man. Item, the picture of a duke of Venice 8 
hanging over against the door, done either by Titiano, or some 
principal hand long before my time. Most humbly beseeching 

5 Niece.'] Elizabeth Dering, daughter of John Dering of Surrenden, hy 
Elizabeth Wotton, sir Henry's only sister. 

r> Dukes of Venice.'] The four doges of whom Wotton speaks were Marino 
(irimani, 1595-1605; Lionardo Donato, 1605-1612; Antonio Memmo, 1612- 
1615; Giovanni Bembo, 1615-1618. The portraits are now in the king's 
dressing-room at Hampton Court palace. 

7 A table.'] This picture, on panel, is now in the second presence chamber 
at Hampton Court palace. 

8 Duke of Venire.] The fate of this picture is uncertain. 


his majesty that the said pieces may remain in some corner of 
any of his houses, for a poor memorial of his most humble 

" Item, I leave his said majesty all the papers and negociations 
of sir Nicholas Throgmorton knight, during his famous employ- 
ment under queen Elizabeth, in Scotland and in France, which 
contain divers secrets of state, that perchance his majesty will 
think fit to be preserved in his paper-office, after they have been 
perused and sorted by Mr. Secretary Windebanck, with whom I 
have heretofore, as I remember, conferred about them. They 
were committed to my disposal by sir Arthur Throgmorton 9 his 
son, to whose worthy memory I cannot better discharge my faith, 
than by assigning them to the highest place of trust. Item, I 
leave to our most gracious and virtuous queen Mary *, Dioscorides, 
with the plants naturally coloured, and the text translated by 
Matthiolo 2 , in the best language of Tuscany, whence her majesty 
is lineally descended 3 , for a poor token of my thankful devotion, 
for the honour she was once pleased to do my private study with 
her presence. I leave to the most hopeful prince, the picture of 
the elected and crowned queen of Bohemia, his aunt, of clear and 
resplendent virtues through the clouds of her fortune. To my 
lord's grace of Canterbury 4 now being, I leave my picture of Divine 
Love, rarely copied from one in the king^s galleries, of my pre- 
sentation to his majesty ; beseeching him to receive it as a pledge 
of my humble reverence to his great wisdom. And to the most 
worthy lord bishop of London 5 , lord high treasurer of England, 
in true admiration of his Christian simplicity, and contempt of 
earthly pomp, I leave a picture of Heraclitus bewailing, and De- 
mocritus laughing at the world : most humbly beseeching the said 
lord archbishop his grace, and the lord bishop of London, of both 

9 Sir Arthur Throgmorton.'] Whose eldest daughter and coheir, Mary, was 
married to sir Henry Wotton's nephew, Thomas, second and last lord Wotton. 

1 Queen Mary.'] Henrietta Maria. 

2 Matthiolo.'] Pietro Matthiolo of Sienna, physician to the emperor and to 
the archduke Ferdinand, who wrote Discorsi nelli sei libri di Pedacio Dios- 
coride Anarzarbeo delta Materia Medicinale. Editions with very beautiful 
wood engravings were printed at Venice in folio, in 1568, 1585, 1604. It was 
no doubt a copy of one of these that Wotton bequeathed, but it is not in 
the Royal library in the British Museum. 

3 Descended^] She being daughter of Marie de' Medici. 

4 My lord's grace of Canterbury .] William Laud. 

5 Bishop of London.] William Juxon, afterwards archbishop of Canterbury. 


whose favours I have tasted in my lifetime, to intercede with our 
most gracious sovereign after my death, in the bowels of Jesus 
Christ, that out of compassionate memory of my long services 
(wherein I more studied the public honour than mine own utility) 
some order may be taken out of my arrears due in the exchequer, 
for such satisfaction of my creditors, as those whom I have 
ordained supervisors of this my last will and testament shall pre- 
sent unto their lordships, without their farther trouble : hoping 
likewise in his majesty's most indubitable goodness, that he will 
keep me from all prejudice, which I may otherwise suffer by any 

defect of formality in the demand of my said arrears. To 

for a poor addition to his cabinet, I leave as emblems of his 
attractive virtues, and nobleness, my great loadstone ; and a 
piece of amber of both kinds naturally united, and only differing 
in degree of concoction, which is thought somewhat rare. Item, 
a piece of christal sexangular (as they grow all) grasping divers 
several things within it, which I bought among the Rhsetian 
Alps, in the very place where it grew: recommending most 
humbly unto his lordship, the reputation of my poor name in 
the point of my debts, as I have done to the forenamed spiritual 
lords ; and am heartily sorry, that I have no better token of my 
humble thankfulness to his honoured person. Item, I leave to 
sir Francis Windebanck, one of his majesties principal secretaries 
of state (whom I found my great friend in point of necessity) the 
Four Seasons of old Bassano, to hang near the eye in his parlour 
(being in little form) which I bought at Venice, where I first 
entered into his most worthy acquaintance. 

" To the above-named Dr. Bargrave e dean of Canterbury. I 
leave all my Italian books not disposed in this will. I leave to 
him likewise my viol de gamba, which hath been twice with me in 
Italy, in which country I first contracted with him an unremove- 
able affection. To my other supervisor, Mr. Nicholas Pey, I 
leave my chest, or cabinet of instruments and engines of all kinds 
of uses : in k the lower box whereof are some fit to be bequeathed 
to none but so entire an honest man as he is. I leave him likc- 

' Dr. BargraveJ] A picture of sir Henry Wotton, and some other por- 
traits, believed to have been in his collection, are now in the possession of 
Thomas Bridger, Esq., of Eastry Court, whose lady is a lineal descendant of 
Dr. Bargrave. 

k In it were Italian locks, picklocks, screws to force open doors, and many 
things of worth and rarity that he had gathered in his foreign travel. 


wise forty pound for his pains in the solicitation of my arrears, 
and am sorry that my ragged estate can reach no further to one 
that hath taken such care for me in the same kind, during all 
my foreign employments. To the library at Eton college I leave 
all my manuscripts not before disposed ; and to each of the fellows 
a plain ring of gold, enamelled black, all save the verge, with this 
motto within, Amor unit omnia. 

" This is my last will and testament, save what shall be added 
by a schedule thereunto annexed. Written on the first of 
October, in the present year of our redemption 1637. And sub- 
scribed by myself, with the testimony of these witnesses. 

" Nich. Oudert. 
Geo. Lash." 

And now, because the mind of man is best satisfied by the 
knowledge of events, I think fit to declare, that every one that 
was named in his will, did gladly receive their legacies ; by which, 
and his most just and passionate desires for the payment of his 
debts, they joined in assisting the overseers of his will ; and by 
their joint endeavours to the king (than whom none was more 
willing) conscionable satisfaction was given for his just debts. 

The next thing wherewith I shall acquaint the reader is, that 
he went usually once a year, if not oftener, to the beloved Bocton- 
hall, where he would say, he found a cure for all cares, by the 
chearful company, which he called the living furniture of that 
place : and, a restoration of his strength, by the connaturalness 
of that which he called his genial air. 

He yearly went also to Oxford. But the summer before his 
death he changed that for a journey to Winchester-college ; to 
which school he was first removed from Bocton. And as he 
returned from Winchester, towards Eton-college, he said to a 
friend, his companion in that journey; " How useful was that 
advice of a holy monk, who persuaded his friend to perform his 
customary devotions in a constant place 7 } because in that place, 
we usually meet with those very thoughts which possessed us at 
our last being there ; and I find it thus far experimentally true ; 
that my now being in that school, and seeing that very place 

7 A constant place. ,] See South's Sermons, vol. i. "God's peculiar regard 
for places set apart for Divine worship ;" or Christian Institutes, vol. iii. p. 432. 
Also Law's Serious Call, &c. chap. 14. 



where I sate when I was a boy, occasioned me to remember 
those very thoughts of my youth which then possessed me; 
sweet thoughts indeed, that promised my growing years numerous 
pleasures, without mixtures of cares ; and those to be enjoyed, 
when time (which I therefore thought slow paced) had changed 
my youth into manhood : but age and experience have taught 
me, that those were but empty hopes : for I have always found 
it true, as my Saviour did foretell, sufficient for the day is the evil 
thereof. Nevertheless, I saw there a succession of boys using the 
same recreations, and questionless possessed with the same 
thoughts that then possessed me. Thus one generation succeeds 
another, both in their lives, recreations, hopes, fears, and death." 
After his return from Winchester to Eton (which was about 
five months before his death) he became much more retired, and 
contemplative ; in which time he was often visited by Mr. John 
Hales, (learned Mr. John Hales) then a fellow of that college ; 

to whom upon an occasion he spake to this purpose " I have 

in my passage to my grave met with most of those joys of which a 
discursive soul is capable ; and been entertained with more inferior 
pleasures than the sons of men are usually made partakers of: 
nevertheless, in this voyage I have not always floated on the calm 
sea of content ; but, have oft met with cross winds and storms, 
and with many troubles of mind and temptations to evil. And, 
yet though I have been and am a man compassed about with hu- 
man frailties, almighty God hath by his grace prevented me from 
making shipwreck of faith and a good conscience ; the thought of 
which is now the joy of my heart, and I most humbly praise him 
for it : and I humbly acknowledge that it was not myself but he 
that hath kept me to this great age ; and let him take the glory 
of his great mercy. And my dear friend, I now see that I draw 
near my harbour of death : that harbour, that will secure me 
from all the future storms and waves of this world ; and I praise 
God I am willing to leave it, and expect a better ; that world, 

wherein dwelleth righteousness, and I long for it." These and 

the like expressions were then uttered by him at the beginning of 
a feverish distemper, at which time he was also troubled with an 
asthma, or short spitting ; but after less than twenty fits, by the 
help of familiar physic and a spare diet, this fever abated ; yet so 
as to leave him much weaker than it found him : and his asthma 
seemed also to be overcome in a good degree by his forbearing 
tobacco, which as many thoughtful men do. In- had also taken 


somewhat immoderately. This was his then present condition, 
and thus he continued till about the end of October 1639, which 
was about a month before his death, at which time he again 
fell into a fever, which though he seemed to recover, yet these 
still left him so weak, that they and those other common infirmi- 
ties that accompany age, and were wont to visit him like civil 
friends, and after some short time to leave him, came now, both 
oftener and with more violence, and at last took up their constant 
habitation with him, still weakening his body and abating his 
chearfulness : of both which he grew more sensible, and did the 
oftener retire into his study, and there made many papers that 
had passed his pen both in the days of his youth, and in the busy 

part of his life, useless by a fire made there to that purpose. 

These and several unusual expressions to his servants and friends, 
seemed to foretell that the day of his death drew near ; for which 
he seemed to those many friends that observed him, to be well 
prepared, and to be both patient, and free from all fear ; as seve- 
ral of his letters writ on this his last sick-bed may testify : and 
thus he continued till about the beginning of December following, 
at which time he was seized more violently with a quotidian fever, 
in the tenth fit of which fever, his better part, that part of sir 
Henry Wotton which could not die, put off mortality, with as 
much content and chearfulness as human frailty is capable of; 
being then in great tranquillity of mind, and in perfect peace with 
God and man. 

And thus the circle of sir Henry Wotton's life (that circle 
which began at Bocton, and in the circumference thereof, did first 
touch at Winchester-school, then at Oxford, and after upon so 
many remarkable parts and passages in Christendom,) that circle 
of his life, was by death thus closed up and compleated, in the 
seventy and second year of his age, at Eton college ; where ac- 
cording to his will, he now lies buried, with his motto on a plain 
grave-stone over him; dying worthy of his name and family, 
worthy of the love and favour of so many princes, and persons of 
eminent wisdom and learning, worthy of the trust committed unto 
him, for the service of his prince and country. 

All readers are requested to believe, that he was worthy of a 
more worthy pen, to have preserved his memory, and com- 
mended his merits to the imitation of posterity. 

Iz. WA. 
i 2 


His state 

Is kingly. Thousands at His bidding speed 
And post o'er land and ocean without rest ; 
They also serve who only stand and wait. 



THE following Life is published, but not without some omissions, 
from Memoirs of the Life of Mr. Nicholas Ferrar, by P. PecJcard, 
D.D. Master of Magdalen College, Cambridge. Cambridge, printed 
by J. Archdeacon, 1790. The present edition, it is presumed, is 
greatly increased in value, by a large accession of very interesting 
papers, transcribed from the Lambeth library, by permission of 
his grace the archbishop of Canterbury. The notices which are 
included in brackets are borrowed from Dr. Peckard. 


THE editor of the following Memoirs has been long and frequently 
solicited to publish the life of Mr. Nicholas Ferrar, of which it 
was known that he once had a manuscript account in his posses- 
sion. It now seems necessary to give a short history of this MS. 
and the reason why he has hitherto delayed his compliance with 
the solicitations that have been made to him. 

He married the eldest daughter of Mr. Edward Ferrar, late of 
Huntingdon, who by his will left to him his books and papers. 
Among the latter was a manuscript life of Nicholas Ferrar, 
entitled, " The complete Church of England Man, &c." written 
out fair and prepared for the press, from authentic memoirs in 
the family, by the Rev. Mr. Francis Peck : a gentleman well 
known to the literary world by his publications relative to various 
articles of antiquity. 

Soon after the death of Mr. Ed. Ferrar, which happened in 
1769, the Rev. Mr. Jones, of Sheephall, in the county of Hert- 
ford, then on a visit to the editor at Huntingdon, requested the 
perusal of this manuscript, which was granted : and the editor 
soon] after went for some time with his family to Bath. On his 
return to Huntingdon, he was informed of the sudden death of 
Mr. Jones, occasioned by a fall from his horse. 

Having made all possible enquiry after this MS. in the neigh- 
bourhood of Sheephall without effect, the editor called upon a 
brother of Mr. Jones, who then lived near St. Clement's church 
in the Strand, who undertook to recover and restore it. But he 
also was prevented doing any thing by his sudden death, which 
happened in a few days after this application. 

Since that time the editor has made all the enquiry both public 
and private that was in his power, but all to no purpose. 



Having now, after near twenty years' fruitless enquiry, given 
up all hopes of recovering his property, the editor nevertheless 
determines, as far as it is in his power, to gratify the solicitations 
of his friends with respect to the life of Mr. Nich. Ferrar. And 
having found the original 1 MS. from which Mr. Peck composed 
his work, entitled, " The complete Church of England Man exem- 
plified in the holy life of Mr. N. Ferrar ;" as also some loose and 
unconnected papers of Mr. Peck's rough draught, he here humbly 
offers to the public the result of his investigation. And although 
he has thought it necessary sometimes to change an obsolete 
phrase for one more modern, or to leave out some passages that 
might now appear of no weight, or to add now and then a few 
sentences for the sake of connection, yet in every thing of moment 
the present production is faithful to the original. 

1 The original.'] This MS., as will be seen below, in the body of this life, 
was compiled by Mr. John Ferrar, the elder brother of Nicholas, about the 
year 1654. 


MR. NICHOLAS FERRAR, though not of exalted rank himself, 
was of a family highly respectable for that real merit which sur- 
passes antiquity of descent or nobility of title, a family illustrious 
for virtue. 

Gualkeline, or Walkeline de Ferrariis, a Norman of distinction, 
came into England with William the Conqueror. To Henry de 
Ferrariis, the second of this family, William gave Tutbury and 
other castles ; and more than a hundred and eighty lordships. 
In process of time the family became very numerous ; founded 
several religious houses ; had the honour of peerage ; and different 
branches of it were settled in many different counties. 

One line was long since established in Yorkshire, from which 
was descended Nicholas, the father of that Nicholas to whose 
memory these imperfect memoirs are dedicated. He was very 
nearly related to that pious and resolute martyr Robert Ferrar, 
bishop of St. David's, who sealed the truth of the Protestant 
religion with his blood, and with these remarkable words after his 
condemnation to the stake, " If you see me stir in the fire, believe 
not the doctrine I have taught V 

Nicholas Ferrar the father was brought up in the profession of 
a merchant adventurer, and traded very extensively to the East 
and West Indies, and to all the celebrated seats of commerce. 
He lived in high repute in the city, where he joined in cominer- 

1 / have taught.'] [Richard Jones, a knight's son, coming to bishop Ferrar 
a little before his execution, lamented the painfulness of the death he had to 
suffer. To whom the bishop answered, that if he saw him stir in the pains 
of his burning, he should then give no credit to his doctrine. And as he 
said so he right well performed the same. For so patiently he stood that he 
never moved : but even as he stood holding up his stumps, so still he con- 
tinued till one Richard Gravel with a staff dashed him upon the head, and so 
stroke him down. March 30, 1555. Fox, Acts and Monuments.'} 


cial matters with sir Thomas and sir Hugh Middleton, and Mr. 
Bateman. He was a man of liberal hospitality, but governed his 
house with great order. He kept a good table, at which he 
frequently received persons of the greatest eminence, sir John 
Hawkins, sir Francis Drake, sir Walter Raleigh, and others, 
with whom he was an adventurer : and in all their expeditions he 
was ever in the highest degree attentive to the planting the Chris- 
tian religion in the new world. At home also he was a zealous 
friend to the established church, and always ready to supply his 
prince with what was required of him. He lent 300. at once 
upon a privy seal : a sum at that time not inconsiderable. He 
had the honour of being written Esq. by Q. Elizabeth : and the 
exemplification of his arms is still in the family. 

He married Mary Wodenoth, daughter of Laurence Wode- 
noth, esq. of the ancient family 8 of that name, .of Savington hall 
in Cheshire, where her ancestors in lineal descent had enjoyed 
that lordship near five hundred years, and were allied to the prin- 
cipal families of that country. 

Mary Wodenoth was surpassed by none in comeliness of body 
or excellence of beauty. She was of modest and sober deport- 
ment, and of great prudence. Of few words, yet when she spoke, 
bishop Lindsel 3 was used to say of her, he knew no woman 
superior to her in eloquence, true judgment or wisdom, and that 
few were equal to her in chanty towards man, or piety towards 

This worthy couple lived together many years in harmony and 
happiness, perfecting their holiness in the fear of God, and in the 
conscientious practice of every duty. They saw descended from 
them a numerous, and a virtuous family 4 , of whose education they 

3 Ancient family.'] An account of the Wodenoths, with their arms and 
pedigree, will be found in Ormerod's History of Cheshire, iii. 261, 262. 

* Bishop Lindsel.'] Augustine Lindsell, dean of Lichfield, elected bishop of 
Peterborough, 22nd December, 1632; translated to Hereford 7th March, 
1634; died 6th November, 1634. 

4 A virtuous family.'] Nicholas Ferrar, the father, died 1st April, 1620, 
leaving issue, " John Farrar, eldest sonne, of the age of 30 yeares ; Nicholas, 
second sonne, fellow of Clare Hall, in Cambridge, of the age of 27 yeares ; 
Richard, third sonne, merchant of London, of the age of 24 yeares; Susan, 
only daughter lyvyng, married to John Collett ', of Bourne, in the county of 

1 This John Collett (alias Collet) had issue by the said Susan five sons 
and seven daughters ; the eldest of which daughters (by name Mary) was 
unmarried in 1684. The rest of them and the two eldest sons married. 


took uncommon care. They did not spoil their children by abso- 
lutely sparing the rod, but what occasional severity they judged 
to be necessary was so softened by tenderness and affection, as 
to produce not only the fear of doing amiss, but the love of doing 

The little instances of corrective discipline exercised by these 
affectionate parents in the beginning of the seventeenth century, 
would perhaps excite the derision of the fastidious reader at the 
end of the eighteenth ; they are therefore omitted. Nevertheless 
they were well calculated to impress the tender mind with a reve- 
rential awe for the Supreme Being ; with obedience to parents, 
and instructors ; with universal and disinterested benevolence ; 
with modesty, with humility, and a proper sense of subordination ; 
with an abhorrence of all vice, but particularly of every species of 

The children born to these virtuous parents were all constantly 
trained in virtue and religion. Their daily practice was to read, 
and to speak by memory some portion of the Scriptures, and parts 
of the Book of Martyrs : they were also made acquainted with 
such passages of history as were suited to their tender years. 
They were all instructed in music ; in performing on the organ, 
viol, and lute, and in the theory and practice of singing ; in the 
learned and modern languages ; in curious needle- works, and all 
the accomplishments of that time. The young men, when arrived 
at years of discretion, had permission each to choose his profes- 
sion, and then no expense was spared to bring him to a distin- 
guished excellence in it. For this was an invariable maxim with 
the parents, that having laid a firm foundation in religion and 
virtue, they would rather give them a good education without 
wealth, than wealth without a good education. 

The parish church and chancel of St. Bennett Sherehog in 
London, Mr. Ferrar repaired and decently seated at his own 
expence ; and as there was not any morning preacher there, he 

Cambridge, gent. He had also issue by Mary, his said wife, Erasmus and 
William, both barresters of the common law, that dyed both without issue. 
John Farrar, eldest sonne of the said Mr. Nicholas Farrar, married two 
wives : his first wife was Anne, daughter of William Shepard, of Great Rol- 
wright, in the county of Oxon, Esq., by whom he had no issue. His second 
wife was Bersabe, daughter of Israel Owen, of London, gent., by whom he 
had issue Mary, who dyed yonge, and Nicholas of the age of two yeares." 
From the Funeral Certificate in Hearne's Caii Vindicia, ii. 683. 


brought from the country Mr. Francis White, and made hii 
their first lecturer. Mr. White was afterwards advanced to th< 
see of Ely 5 . 

When a stranger preached, Mr. Ferrar always invited him 
dinner, and if it was discovered that he was in any necessity, he 
never departed without a handsome present. In truth they never 
were without a clergyman as a companion in their house, or even 
on their journeys, as they always accustomed themselves to 
morning and evening prayer. 

Nicholas Ferrar, the third son of this worthy couple, was born 
the 22d and christened the 23d of Feb. 1592, in the parish of 
St. Mary Stayning in Mark-lane, London. His godfathers do 
not appear. His godmother was a Mrs. Riggs, wife to captain 
Riggs, who recommended herself highly to the esteem of q. Eliza- 
beth, by an heroic act which she performed upon the sea-shore at 
Dover in 1 588, as her story relates at large. 

He was a beautiful child of a fair complexion, and light- coloured 
hair. At four years of age he was sent to school, being of a 
tractable disposition and lively parts. At five he could read per- 
fectly, or repeat with propriety and grace a chapter in the Bible, 
which the parents made the daily exercise of their children. By 
the brightness of his parts, and the uncommon strength of his 
memory he attained with great ease and quickness whatsoever he 
set himself to learn ; yet was he also remarkably studious ; being 
a rare instance of the union of the brightest parts with the most 
intense industry. From the early possession of his mind with 
ideas of piety and virtue, and a love for historical information, 
the Bible in his very early years became to him the book above 
all others most dear and estimable ; and next to this in his esteem 
was Fox's book of Martyrs, from which he could repeat perfectly 
the history of his near kinsman bishop Ferrar. And when in his 
riper years he undertook the instruction of the family, he con- 
stantly exercised them also in the reading and in the study of 
these two books. He was particularly fond of all historical rela- 
tions, and when engaged in this sort of reading, the day did not 
satisfy him, but he would borrow from the night; insomuch that 
his mother would frequently seek him out, and force him to par- 
take of some proper recreation. Hence, even in his childhood, 

* See of Ely] Francis White, dean of Carlisle, was successively bishop of 
Carlisle, in 1626; of Norwich, in 1629; of Ely. in 1631. He died in 1638. 


his mind was so furnished with historical anecdotes, that he could 
at any time draw off his schoolfellows from their play, who would 
eagerly surround him, and with the utmost attention listen to his 
little tales, always calculated to inspire them with a love of piety 
and goodness, and excite in them a virtuous imitation. 

When he was very young he was entered into Latin at London, 
at the desire of his master, though others thought it too soon : 
but he was so eager and diligent in his application that he soon 
surpassed all his companions. 

He was of a grave disposition, and very early shewed a great 
dislike of every thing that savoured of worldly vanity. In his 
apparel he wished to be neat, but refused all that was not simple 
and plain. When bands were making for the children, he 
earnestly entreated his mother that his might not have any lace 
upon them, like those of his brothers, but be made little and 
plain, like those of Mr. Wotton a , a for I wish to be a preacher as 
he is." Mr. Wotton was a learned divine and reader of divinity 
in Gresham college. He was frequently at Mr. Ferraris, and 
always examined, and exercised young Nicholas, being wonder- 
fully delighted with his ingenuity. 

He was good natured and tender hearted to the highest degree ; 
so fearful of offending any one, that upon the least apprehension 
of having given displeasure, he would suddenly weep in the most 
submissive manner, and appear extremely sorry. His temper was 
lovely, his countenance pleasing : his constitution was not robust, 
but he was active, lively, and chearful. Whatsoever he went 
about he did it with great spirit, and with a diligence and discre- 
tion above his years. 

And now the parents were informed by their friends, and by 
Mr. Francis his school-master, that it was time to send him to 
some greater school, where he might have a better opportunity to 
improve himself in the Latin tongue. It was thereupon resolved 
to send him and his brother William to Euborn, near Newbury 
in Berkshire, to the house of Mr. Brooks, an old friend, who had 
many other pupils, who was a religious and good man, but a strict 

While preparations were making for this journey, an event 

6 Mr. Wotton J\ Anthony Wotton, chosen professor of divinity in Gresham 
College, in March, 1596, at its foundation, and lecturer of Allhallows, Bark- 
ing : he died in 1626. An account of him and of his works will be found in 
Ward's Lives of the Gresham Professors. 


took place which made the deepest and most lively impressi( 
upon the mind of young Nicholas, and strongly marks his cha- 
racter, and the bent of his disposition. He was but six years 
age, and being one night unable to sleep, a fit of scepticism 
seized his mind, and gave him the greatest perplexity and un< 
siness. He doubted u Whether there was a God f and if there 
was, " What was the most acceptable mode of serving him f 1 
In extreme grief he rose at midnight, cold, and frosty, and wenl 
down to a grass plat in the garden, where he stood long time sad 
and pensive, musing, and thinking seriously upon the great doubt 
which thus extremely perplexed him. At length, throwing him- 
self on his face upon the ground, and spreading out his hands, h( 
cried aloud, " Yes, there is, there must be a God : and he, n< 
question, if I duly and earnestly seek it of him, will teach me no< 
only how to know, but how to serve him acceptably. He will 
with me all my life here, and at the end will hereafter make m( 

These are exalted and wonderful sentiments 7 for a child of si: 

7 Wonderful sentimentsJ] It will be proper to subjoin here, from Hearne's 
Caii Vindicia, vol. ii. p. 684, 5, the " Account of Mr. Nicholas Ferrar's first 
years, from a paper MS. of Dr. (John) Worthington's." Its value is enhanced 
by Dr. W. having been well acquainted with the party. 

"Mr. Nicholas Ferrar was born about the year 1596, in London, of reli- 
gious parents; who taught him in his infancy the first foundations of 
Christian religion. He was taught at the age of four or five years to say his 
prayers often every day ; to repeat the Church Catechism ; and to read the 
Psalter and the New Testament. 

" When he was six years old, and by his mother had been taught to read 
perfectly throughout the whole Bible, it is worthy of memory and admiration 
to hear what he did. Upon a Friday night in summer, having supped, as 
the manner was, with bread and beer, and said his prayers and catechism, 
his mother sent him up to bed. But this good child, having a mind set 
upon God, went not to bed, but into an upper chamber or garret; where, 
upon his knees, or sometimes flat upon the ground, he prayed, wept, com- 
muned with his own heart, and with his gracious God all the night. Two 
things especially in that night's holy exercise were so imprinted in the heart 
and mind of the child that they came fresh into his memory every day of his 
life. (This he told me more than once, two or three years before his death.) 
The one was, the joy and sweetness which he did, in that watching night, 
conceive and feel in his heart. The other was the gracious promise which 
God made to him, to bless and keep him all his whole life, so that he would 
constantly fear God and keep his commandments. 

"This invocation and fervent prayer of this child, stirred up in him by 
the Spirit and grace of God, was so followed by the same Spirit in an evident 


years old : and this anecdote may influence the reader to give 
credit to those sublime ecstasies of devotion which he experienced 
and expressed at the close of his life. 

His doubts now vanished, his mind became easy, and he 
returned to his apartment : but the remembrance of what he felt 
upon this occasion made him ever after strongly commiserate all 
who laboured under any religious doubt, or despair of mind. 
And in the future course of his life he had repeated opportunities 
to exert his benevolence to those who experienced a similar 

In the year 1598, he was sent to Euborn school, near Newbury, 
in Berkshire, where he made such a rapid progress in Latin, 
Greek, and logic, that he soon became the first scholar of his 
years. He strengthened his memory by daily exercise : he was 
a great proficient in writing and arithmetic, and attained such 
excellence in short hand, as to be able to take accurately a ser- 
mon or speech on any occasion. He was also well skilled both in 
the theory and practice of vocal and instrumental music. 

Thus accomplished, in his fourteenth year, his master, Mr. 
Brooks, prevailed with his parents to send him to Cambridge, 
whither he himself attended him, and admitted him of Clare-hall, 
presenting him, with due commendation of his uncommon abilities, 
to Mr. Augustine Lindsell, the tutor, and Dr. Wm. Smith 8 , then 
master of the college. 

His parents thought proper, notwithstanding the remonstrance 
of some friends against it, to admit him a pensioner for the first 
year ; as they conceived it more for his good, to rise by merit 
gradually to honour. In this situation, by excellent demeanour, 
and diligent application to his studies, he so deported himself in 
all things, and to all persons, that he instantly gained the affec- 
tions and applause of all who knew him, performing all his exer- 
cises with distinguished approbation. 

Mr. Lindsell spared not to make full proof of his abilities, 

effectual vocation of him, that it resembleth the calling of Samuel, when he 
was yet a child ; and Timothy's knowing God from his youth by his mother 
Eunice, and his grandmother Lois's godly admonitions and instructions. 
"At the age of thirteen, he went to Cambridge, to Clare Hall." 
8 Dr. Wm. Smith.'] Or Smyth, fellow of King's College, elected master of 
Clare Hall in 15Q8, chaplain to king James and rector of Willingham in 1607. 
He died provost of King's in 1615. 

VOL. iv. K 


wishing, as he was used to express himself, to see his inside, as 
well as his outside. He therefore made many trials of his abili- 
ties, which the rest of the fellows thought unreasonable ; saying 
"it was a shame to spur a fleet horse, which already outwent the 
rider's own desire, and won every race he put him to." When 
they urged that he required impossibilities, he would reply, " con- 
tent yourselves a little, you shall see what the boy can do, and 
that too without much trouble." These proofs of wonderful abi- 
lities were continually repeated, and he thus went on from day to 
day improving in all good learning. His attention and diligence 
was such, that it was observed his chamber might be known by 
the candle that was last put out at night, and the first lighted in 
the morning. Nor was he less diligent in his attendance at 
chapel, than at his studies, so that his piety and learning went on 
hand in hand together. 

In his second year he became fellow-commoner, and being now 
every day more and more the companion of the fellows, he every 
day became more and more esteemed by them. In 1610, he took 
his degree of bachelor of arts. At this time he was appointed 
to make the speech on the king's coronation day (July 25) in the 
college hall ; and the same year he was elected fellow of that 

If we take a view of him at this period when he became fellow, 
we shall find that his natural parts were wonderfully improved, 
his memory so enlarged and strengthened, that he had read no- 
thing of worth, but he had made it his own, and could always 
instantly apply it to the present occasion. He spoke also and 
wrote, and argued with such ingenious dexterity that very few 
indeed were equal to him. Nevertheless he was still so eager in 
the pursuit of farther acquisitions, that industry and genius 
seemed to be incorporated in him. Nor was he more attentive 
to his own instruction, than to the happiness of all with whom he 
was concerned. For he was a constant and indefatigable pro- 
moter of peace ; and when any difference had arisen, he had tin 1 
art so to win upon each side, that he would draw the ooateadiag 
parties from their unfriendly resolutions, and reanimate and 
blish harmony between them. Mr. Lindsell was used to say of 
him, " May God keep him in a right mind ! For if he should 
turn schismatic, or heretic, he would make work for all the world. 
Such a head, such power of argument ! such a tongue, and su.-h 


a pen ! such a memory withal he hath, with such indefatigable 
pains, that, all these joined together, I know not who would be 
able to contend with him." 

His constitution was of feminine delicacy, and he was very sub- 
ject to aguish disorders ; yet he bore them out in a great measure 
by his temperance, and by a peculiar courageousness of spirit 
which was natural to him. His favourite sister, married to Mr. 
Collet, lived at Bourn Bridge, near Cambridge. And as the air 
of Cambridge was found not well to agree with him, he made 
frequent excursions to Bourn Bridge, where he passed his time 
in the pursuit of his studies, and in the instruction of his sister's 

But his tutor, Mr. Lindsell, Mr. Ruggle 9 , and others of the 
fellows, having now apprehension of his health, carried him to Dr. 
Butler, the celebrated physician l of Cambridge, who had been of 
Clare-hall, and was a particular friend of Mr. Lindsell. Dr. But- 
ler conceived a great affection for Mr. Ferrar, and exerted all his 
skill ; yet still the disorder increased more and more upon him ; 
and at length this good physician said, " Why should I give thee 
any more prescriptions ? ah 1 I can do will not conquer this dis- 
temper. Alas ! all I can say is, you must henceforth deal with 

9 Mr. Ruggle.~\ [Mr. Ruggle wrote the Latin comedy of Ignoramus, which 
was several times acted before king James I. at Cambridge and Royston, 
with great applause. At one of which times the king cried out treason, 
treason. And being asked what was the matter, said, he believed the author 
and the actors together had a design to make him laugh himself to death. 
Another time, when the king was seated, and expected the scholars to per- 
form, he was surprised with the sound of a horn, and the appearance of a 
post-boy, who said that Ignoramus was ready to perform his part, but that 
none of the lawyers would lend him a gown to act in. Ah! said the king 
(who was deceived, and took the scholar for a real post-boy), this is a plot of 
Cukes ! (meaning the Lord Chief Justice Coke.) But if Cuke won't let the 
lawyers lend him a gown, by my saul, man, he shall lend him his own. This 
speech of the king put the audience into an exceeding merry humour, and 
the play went on. But it is suggested that the play of Ignoramus, acted at 
Cambridge, 1614, occasioned Mr. Selden's History of Tithes, published 1616, 
in order to be even with the clergy. See Lloyd's Memoirs, fol. p. 520. F. P.] 

1 Celebrated physician.] William Butler, who died 29th January, 1618. 
He declared that prince Henry was poisoned, " from his brain being liver- 
coloured and putrefied." Peacham says of him, "our late Master Butler of 
Cambridge, that learned and excellent physician, was, like sir Thomas More 
and other great scholars, observed to be most careless and slovenly in his 

K 2 


this disorder when it comes to you, as men do with beggars, 
when they have a mind to disuse them from their houses, give 
them nothing but let them go as they came. You must through 
a spare diet, and great temperance, even all your lite long, seek 
to be quit of this unhappy companion : he must be starved away." 

For some time after this Mr. Ferrar grew better, but soon 
relapsed again, and in the autumn of 1612, he began to grow 
very ill. His friends now feared he would not get over the 
winter. Dr. Butler said, " I can do no more for him, the last 
remedy, or hope I can give you is from the change of air. He 
must go in the spring to travel. I doubt not but I can keep him 
up this winter, and if travel recover him not, nothing will. Be- 
sides, it is high time his mind be taken off from these his in- 
cessant studies ; these alone, if he be permitted to go on, will 
speedily destroy his constitution. The course I propose may 
prolong his life till he is thirty-five years of age ; but longer, in 
my judgment, it will not last. In the mean time, he will live to 
do great good. And think not that his time spent in travel will 
be lost ; no : depend upon it he will improve himself greatly. 
Mr. Lindsell, go your way ; think of it : persuade his parents to 
it. I can say no more to you. Let him go next spring. I will 
take care of him this winter." And so he did most affectionately. 

Mr. Ferrar was now almost seven years standing in the uni- 
versity, and was to take his master of arts degree at the ensuing 
Midsummer, 1613; and he had already performed with great 
credit all his previous exercises. 

It being made known to the heads of the university that he 
was to travel, and to have the opportunity of going with that 
noble company which then went with the lady Elizabeth 2 to con- 
duct her to the palatinate with the palsgrave her husband, it was 
propounded that he might have the favour of cap and hood imme- 
diately, though before the usual time, so as to be complete master 
of arts before his departure, which was readily granted, and im- 
mediately his graces were given him. And now many came to 
present their most affectionate wishes to him for health and hap- 
piness in his travels. And thus he bade Cambridge adieu ! 

2 Lady Elizabeth.'] Princess-royal of England, daughter of Jaines I., and 
wife of Frederic, elector palatine, to whom she was married in February, 1613. 
He assumed the crown of Bohemia in 1C 19, but after the battle of Prague, 
in November, 1620, he not only lost his crown, but also his hereditary 


All things being settled with respect to his going abroad, Mr. 
Ferrar left the following written farewell to his family, which his 
mother found in his study a few days after he was gone. 

" Since there is nothing more certain than death, nor more 
uncertain than the time when ; I have thought it the first and 
chiefest wisdom for a man to prepare himself for that which must 
one day come, and always be ready for that which may every 
hour happen : especially considering how dangerous any error is 
here, which cannot be amended : neither is any one the nearer to 
death for having prepared for it. It is then a thing of exceeding 
madness and folly to be negligent in so weighty a matter, in re- 
spect whereof all other things are trifles. I here confess my own 
wretchedness and folly in this, that through the common hope of 
youth, I have set death far from me : and persuading myself that 
I had a long way to go, have walked more carelessly than I ought. 
The good Lord God be merciful unto me. 

" Indeed I have a long way to run, if death stood still at the 
end of threescore years : but God knows if he be not running 
against me, if he be not ready to grasp me, especially considering 
the many dangers wherein I am now to hazard myself, in every 
one whereof death dwells. If God be merciful to me, and bring 
me safe home again, I will all the days of my life serve him in his 
tabernacle, and in his holy sanctuary. 

" I hope he who hath begun this mind in me will continue it, 
and make me to walk so as I may be always ready for him, when 
he shall come either in the public judgment of all the world, or 
in private judgment to me by death. This is my purpose and 
this shall be my labour. 

" And you, my most dear parents, if God shall take me from 
you, I beseech you be of good comfort, and be not grieved at my 
death, which I undoubtedly hope shall be to me the beginning of 
eternal happiness. It was God that gave me to you, and if he 
take me from you, be not only content but joyful that I am deli- 
vered from the vale of misery. This God that hath kept me ever 
since I was born, will preserve me to the end, and will give me 
grace to live in his faith, to die in his favour, to rest in his peace, 
to rise in his power, and to reign in his glory. 

" I know, my most dear parents, your tender affections to- 
wards your children, and fear your grief if God take me away. 
I therefore write and leave this, that you might know your son's 


estate, and assure yourselves that though he be dead to you, yet 
he is alive to God. 

" I now most humbly beseech you to pardon me in whatsoever 
I may have at any time displeased you : and I pray God to bless 
and keep you : to give you a happy life here, and everlasting in 
the world to come. 

" Your most humble and obedient son, 

" N. FERRAR." 

" Postscript, 

" My dearest brothers and sisters ; If I live, you shall find me 
a faithful and loving brother unto you all : if I die, I beseech you 
by the fear of God, by the duty to your parents, by the bond of 
nature, by the love you bear me, that you all agree in perfect love 
and amity ; and account every one the other's burthen to be his ; 
so may plenty and prosperity dwell among you. So prays your 
faithful and loving brother 

" N. FEURAR." 

" If I die, I desire that the value of ol. of my books may be 
given to the college : the rest I leave to my father's and mother's 
disposing : yet I desire that in them my worthy tutor Lindsel 
and cousin Theophilus may be remembered : and if any of my 
sisters' sons prove a scholar, the rest may be given to him. 

" This 10th day of April, being Sunday." 

His parents' consent, and the college license obtained, and the 
favour of the university granted with respect to his degree, Mr. 
Ferrar prepared to set out upon his travels : a course of life 
undertaken upon Dr. Butler's counsel, for the restoration of his 
health, and to take him off from his incessant application to 
his studies. He also himself had a desire to see foreign coun- 
tries for the further acquisition of knowledge. And as he \u-ll 
understood the grounds of the protestant religion, and was con- 
vinced of its truth on scriptural authority, as he had read most 
of the fathers, and controversial writings between the church of 
England and the church of Rome, and as he had a memory so 
retentive, that he forgot nothing which he had read, but was able 
at all times to bring it forth, and apply it to the present occasion, 
being thus armed before-hand against whatever might occur, and 


relying wholly upon the mercy of God to protect him, with the 
most virtuous resolutions of heart he set out upon his travels. 

His tutor Lindsell solemnly protested that had he not per- 
fectly known his wonderful abilities and uncommon virtue, he 
should not in these so tender years of his pupil have been a pro- 
moter of his travelling in the manner he did, all alone ; but would 
have provided some worthy tutor to attend him. He knew that 
in all virtue Nicholas Ferrar was an old man, so firmly fixed in 
his religious principles, that there was no fear of his being se- 
duced by any thing that he should hear or see. He knew that 
the stock of learning, wisdom, and religion which he carried out 
with him, would be increased at his return. 

With these encouragements did Mr. Lindsell appease the fears 
and tender anxieties of his parents at parting with him : for they 
bade him farewell under the dread of never seeing him again. 
And indeed not without reason : for he was then far from being 
recovered of his aguish disorder : but Dr. Butler said the sea 
would remove it, and they would soon hear that he was freed 
from his infirmity. 

Sometime before this 3 , Dr. Scot 4 , the king's sub-almoner, was 
made master of Clare-hall, in the place of Dr. Smith, removed to 
be provost of Kings. He conceived a high respect and affection 
for Nicholas Ferrar, and undertook that he should be introduced 
to the lady Elizabeth, to go in her company and retinue ; she 
being now ready to depart with the prince palsgrave her husband, 
who were to go first to Zealand, then to Holland, and from thence 
home to the palatinate. Dr. Scot therefore took Mr. Ferrar to 
court, to kiss her royal highness 1 hand : not now in the garb of a 
scholar, but habited as one of the gentlemen who belonged to 
her. As for him he took no delight in these gay garments, but 
submitted from a sense of propriety to be thus clad, and to satisfy 
his friends more than himself. Dr. Scot also introduced him, and 
procured him the knowledge and acquaintance of the whole at- 
tendance of the English courtiers who then went with the lady 

Being now provided with his bills of exchange, he went in the 
same ship with the master of the green cloth, who took an espe- 
cial liking to him. They arrived happily at Flushing, where the 

3 Before this.'] In 1612. 

4 Dr. Scot.'] Who was afterwards made dean of Rochester, in July, 1615, 
and died in December, 1620. 


royal fleet landed their passengers. And in this voyage Mr. 
Ferrar found the benefit of the sea air which, as Dr. Butler told 
him it would, cleared him of all the remains of his disorder. At 
Middleburgh the lady Elizabeth was highly entertained and 
feasted with all her noble attendants ; and Mr. Ferrar as one of 
her gentlemen wanted for no marks of due notice and respect. 
Here he made strict observation of every thing worth seeing, and 
gained a sufficient acquaintance with the language to serve him 
for all ordinary affairs and occasions. From thence the lady 
Elizabeth passed on from city to city, in all which she was received 
with great honour, and came to the Hague: from thence to 
Amsterdam, where she was more magnificently entertained than 
at any former place. In all these towns Mr. Ferrar visited the 
several meeting-houses of the Brownists, Anabaptists, and other 
Protestant dissenters, both to observe their manners and teaching, 
and to see if all were answerable to his own former reading. At 
all which times he noted their errors, and greatly confirmed him- 
self in his own opinions. The Jews' synagogue likewise he left 
not unseen, and their orders. But that which chiefly attracted 
his notice at Amsterdam was their guest, or almshouses, where 
young children of both sexes are brought up to learn handicrafts. 
Here he got particular information of all their proceedings, and 
very liberally rewarded the attendants. He particularly admired 
the stateliness and neatness of the Dutch in these public edifices, 
and the wonderful good orders and rules by which they are go- 
verned. He also visited their churches, heard their sermons, and 
attended all their religious rites and ceremonies. He next observed 
their magazines for all sorts of stores : their innumerable boats 
and ships, and noted the different way of building from ours in 
the structure of their war ships. Ours he perceived were stronger 
made, but theirs formed with more advantage for speedy sailing. 
He was also charmed with their cleanliness and the many good 
orders every where observed to that intent. And he observed 
that the whole nation kept their houses elegantly neat in all places. 
When he came to his lodgings he regularly entered all his obser- 
vations in a book which he kept for that purpose. 

The princess royal now directed her course towards the pala- 
tinate, which was different from the route intended by Mr. Ferrar, 
who had resolved to pass through the lower parts of Westphalia, 
and so to Bremen, Staad, Hamburgh, Lunenburgh, Lulu-ck. 
Leipsic, and so on to the upper parts of Germany. This his deter- 


mination he made known to the lady Elizabeths chief attendants, 
who warmly pressed him to accompany them to Heidelberg, the 
palsgrave^s court, and the chief city of the palatinate. They told 
him that her highness had taken such good notice of him herself, 
and had heard so much of him from the commendations of others, 
that if he sought preferment by his travels, he might now, even 
at the first, make a very fair step towards it. There was no 
doubt but he might be made her secretary, that she would think 
him well worthy of that place, and might recommend him to a 
better. He humbly thanked them for their good opinion, but 
assured them they were mistaken in his abilities. He was then 
introduced to her royal highness, and kissed her hand, who bade 
him farewell, and wished him much happiness in his travels. 

Mr. Ferrar now set forward on his journey from Amsterdam to 
Hamburgh, and on his way thither he travelled for some time 
with a person for his guide, who had but one eye. After some 
days 1 travel they passed by a wood, where was a gibbet and some 
bodies hanging in chains. " Now," said the postman, " sir, look 
yonder ; those villains there hanging, some years since set upon 
my waggon, wherein were an English youth, and a Hamburgh 
merchant, then newly come out of Spain. The rogues carried us 
into that wood on a cold frosty morning and stripped us : and 
they found good gold tied up in the shirts of the gentlemen who 
had travelled with me, which they took, then drank up our wine, 
and went away laughing. But sometime after, they, still using 
the same trade, set upon another waggon, whose passengers made 
some resistance, when they shot three of them dead in the waggon, 
and then fled. They were afterwards taken, and there hanged as 
you see." " Your history is true," said Mr. Ferrar ; " for that 
English youth was my brother. He has told me this story him- 
self. And when I first saw you, I knew you to be the postman 
with whom he travelled, for he described you as having but one 

At length he arrived at Hamburgh, where the factors of the 
merchant adventurers were resident, to whom his father and bro- 
ther were well known. Here he found fresh bills of exchange, 
and letters from his father to Mr. Gore, his old acquaintance, and 
then deputy-governor of the company ; who received Mr. Ferrar 
with great friendship and respect, and provided a convenient 
lodging for him. During his stay here he procured a scholar of 
that country to attend him daily at his lodgings, and instruct him 


in the high Dutch 5 language, in which he made such a proficiency 
as to be of great service in the course of his travels. Here also 
in the afternoon he spent some hours in examining the curiosities 
in this city, and in the places adjacent. And here he informed 
himself by reading the histories in the Dutch language, and by 
discourse with men of learning in the place, of the original of this 
and the neighbouring cities : of their several sorts of government ; 
their religion ; ecclesiastical establishment ; their trades ; their 
commerce ; the nature and disposition of the people, and their 
particular virtues and vices. 

From Hamburg Mr. Ferrar travelled up the country through 
many cities, at each of which he staid a sufficient time to see, and 
make observations upon all things worthy of notice, which he 
regularly entered into his book for that use in short hand. 

In this manner he passed up to the university of Leipsic in 
Saxony : where, having proper letters of credit, he resolved to 
abide for some time, both to perfect himself in the high Dutch 
language, and to gain also what other knowledge and learning he 
could in that place ; and to acquaint himself with the manner 
of ordering all things in that university. He lodged himself 
therefore in a principal house of that city, which by a friend's 
help he obtained permission to do ; and the people there were very 
civil and courteous to him. The English factors shewed him 
much respect, and were greatly delighted with his pleasant dispo- 
sition and temper. And they were the more taken with him 
when they saw that he would not upon any terms drink wine or 
any strong drink, and had also observed his great temperance in 
all things, and that he was very humble and meek in his behaviour. 
Yet still they saw him gallant and rich in apparel. But that 
fashion of dress his parents thought was the best for him to make 
use of in his travels, that so, according to the mode of the world, 
he might have the easier admittance into all places, and all 
respectable company. 

At Leipsic he made enquiry after all the ablest scholars in 
every art and science in that university, who could be procured 
for money to teach him ; and he paid them all most liberally, and 
far beyond their expectations. From these circumstances he was 
thought to be some person of great account. These his several 
tutors coming to him at set times, and on several days, and his 

ifjh Dutch."} The German language, die dcutschc Sprache. 


personal resorting with the utmost diligence to all the exercises 
performed in the public schools, made him to be very much 
noticed. He gained great reputation for his uncommon abilities, 
his diligence, and his sweet deportment ; his extraordinary quick- 
ness in attaining whatsoever he set himself to, the elegant Latin 
which he spake with the utmost readiness, and his abundant know- 
ledge in several sorts of learning. The universal admiration he 
obtained was also much heightened by his being so very young. 
His acquaintance was desired by all the learned men of that 
university : and he being free in all courtesy to enter into discourse 
with them, many every day resorted to him. But finding that 
this took up too much of his time, he privately retired into lodg- 
ings in a village in the neighbourhood, and there enjoyed a better 
opportunity to follow the studies he had resolved upon ; his tutors 
attending him as they had done before. And here he passed 
some time in reading over the best authors who had written on 
the German nation, and in acquainting himself with the nature of 
the government, laws, and customs. 

The connection of the English factors at Leipsic with their 
principals at home soon transmitted the fame of Nicholas Ferrar 
to England, who was deemed and represented as a person who 
had some great intent in his mind, but that it was feared by all 
that he could not live to be a man of any considerable years. 

As on one hand his parents could not but rejoice on hearing 
these accounts, so on the other they could not help fearing that 
his extreme application might, though at present he was in per- 
fect health, nevertheless decay his strength, and shorten his life. 
They therefore exhorted him to curb his too diligent mind, and to 
abate of his incessant studies, for that they would allow him what 
time and money he would for his expences. 

Having now learned what he could at Leipsic, he departed 
from thence for Prague, and there he abode a considerable time, 
till he was able to converse fluently in the high Dutch language. 
From thence he wandered up and down, to every great place here 
and there, sometimes backwards, sometimes forward, visiting 
Augsburg, Strasburg, Nuremberg, Ulme, Spires, the emperor's 
court, and so from one princess court to another, observing every 
where their manner of living, and spending their time ; what 
magazines of arms they had ; what retinues they kept ; what their 
incomes were ; from whence they had their origin ; what had 
been their revolutions ; and accurately noting down whatever 


Germany had in any place worth recording. There being also in 
several parts of Germany very ingenious handicrafts of various 
sorts, in all these he acquired a considerable degree of knowledge. 
So that there was scarce any trade, art, skill or science concerning 
which he could not discourse to the astonishment even of the 
professors themselves in their respective professions. He was 
master also of the technical terms of their several mysteries, and 
could speak properly to them in their own dialect. He could 
express all those things that belong to war, soldiery, and arms, 
all that belong to ships, and navigation, and was perfect in all the 
mariners^ peculiar phrases, and in all the particularities of every 
trade and occupation in common life. And in truth all this with- 
out any great care or trouble. For his penetration was so acute, 
and his memory so vast and retentive ; that every thing he read, 
or heard, or saw, was all his own, and he could instantly apply it 
to the occasion that presented itself, as all who knew him found 
by daily proof. 

From Germany, Nicholas Ferrar bent his course for Italy. 
But the plague being at that time in many towns of Germany, 
when he came into the Venetian territories, he was obliged to 
remain thirty days in one place in a lazaretto, where he was shut 
up for public security ; but was allowed a chamber to himself. 
Here he had leisure to recollect all those things, which to that 
time had passed in his travels ; to review his notes and observa- 
tions, which he had before all along put into short hand ; and to 
digest them into better order for his future use. Here also he 
had time to meditate what he was to do in Italy ; how to order 
himself and his future life to the best advantage to attain his 
several ends in travel. 

Having compleated the thirty days of his confinement, and 
being again at liberty to prosecute his journey, it may not be 
amiss to relate a remarkable escape he had upon the road betwivn 
Prague and Padua. As he rode one day upon some very narrow 
and dangerous passages of the Alps, his guide being somewhat 
before him, suddenly from the side of a hill came an ass laden 
with a great piece of timber. The passage down the hill was 
( xtremely narrow, on one side very high and precipitous above 
him, and on the other also precipitously steep and fearful, so that 
if any man fell, nothing but immediate death could be expected. 
The timber did not lie, as at first laid down, lengthwise, but quite 
across the ass's back, and reached the whole breadth of the ja 


from one side to the other, and the beast came down the hill 
apace. The guide, who was advanced a few yards, and had passed 
the narrow crevice through which the ass came into the common 
road, seeing Mr. Ferrar's situation, cried out in terror. The 
man's exclamation caused Mr. Ferrar to look up, who was care- 
fully regarding his horsed steps, and was then upon the extreme 
brink of the precipice. There was but a moment between him 
and certain destruction; when in that moment, just as the beast 
came upon him she tripped, and by that motion the timber was 
turned the right way as it was at first laid on. Mr. Ferrar then 
suddenly stopping his horse upon the very edge of the precipice, 
there stood still, till, as it pleased God, the beast went quietly on 
with her burthen, and passed him without any harm but a slight 
stroke from the timber. After this providential escape, for which 
he returned his most devout thanks to God, he proceeded on his 
road to Padua, and so on to Venice, without any other disaster. 

At Venice Mr. Ferrar found letters of recommendation directed 
for sir Dudley Carleton, at that time 6 the English ambassador 
there, which he presented to him, who most courteously embraced 
him, saying, u I have a long time expected your coming to 
Venice ; for I have received several letters from many noble 
personages concerning you. And now, sir, assure yourself that 
wherein I may in any kind befriend you, I shall most gladly do 
it." The ambassador then caused him to dine with him, and 
invited him, he said, once for all to do so every day. Mr. Ferrar 
frequently repaired to him that he might inform himself from so 
eminent a person of those things that might be of service to him 
in his future travels. 

Having now staid a convenient time at Venice, he returned to 
Padua, which before he had only passed through, but now resolved 
to settle there for some time ; in order to perfect himself in all 
the learning and knowledge to be attained in that university. 
Here therefore he procured tutors in those sciences in which he 
intended to be farther instructed. And he won their highest 
admiration at his ingenious questions and answers, his ready 
apprehension, his earnest prosecution, and his wonderful pro- 
ficiency, in so many and such various studies, which at the same 
time seemed to him no other than so many several recreations. 

6 At that time.'] From 1610 to 1615, when he was succeeded by sir Henry 


His acquaintance was courted by all the learned men in the 
university, but particularly by the most eminent physicians ; as 
he bestowed uncommon diligence in the pursuit of medical know- 
ledge. And this he did from a double motive, both because he 
held the physic fellowship at Clare Hall, and also on account of 
the infirm and precarious state of his own health : in which 
respect a proper proficiency in the science of medicine might be 
peculiarly serviceable to him. And now his friendship with the 
Paduan physicians, and their high esteem and great love for him, 
was of singular benefit to him : for he fell very dangerously ill of 
a disorder, which in all human probability would have proved 
fatal, had it not been for their watchful care, and most tender 

It has been suggested by Mr. Archdeacon Oley a , that some of 
these Paduan physicians, during Mr. Ferrar's illness, endeavored 
to seduce him to popery : as also, that upon his recovery from 
this illness, he made a vow of perpetual celibacy : and that he 
\\ould upon his return to England, as soon as he could conve- 
niently, settle his affairs for that purpose, and endeavour to spend 
tin- remainder of his life in a religious retirement. But of these 
articles I do not find sufficient evidence : yet if the latter be true, 
it will account for a very remarkable instance of self-denial, which 
will occur in the future part of his life. 

While Mr. Ferrar continued thus at Padua, to establish his 
health, and pursue his studies, he had an opportunity of exer- 
cising his great faculty in quieting a troubled mind. For now an 
English gentleman came thither, who by the impious custom of 
duelling had killed another, and had fled from his country to 
a\nid the puni.-hment which the laws adjudge to murderers. He 
was under the deepest melancholy, but concealed the cause of 
his uneasiness. At length, however, he acquainted Mr. Ferrar 
\\ith his misfortune, declaring his great contrition, and sincere 
repentance ; and beseeching him to give him counsel and com- 
fort. Mr. Ferrar by his spiritual consolations, his persuasive 
Mients, and wonderful power over the human mind, at length 
made the unhappy sufferer more easy and composed, and con- 
firmed him in the hope of forgiveness. And this event laid the 

[Postscript to Mr. Herbert's Country Parson, F. P.] See Thomas 
Baker's account of Oley, given to Hearne in Auu and printed in 

Cflfi Vindicuf, vol. ii. p. 690. 


foundation of a sincere and most affectionate friendship between 
them b . 

Mr. Ferrar thus passing his time between Venice and Padua in 
a course of learning and virtue, and in the most laudable pursuits, 
he was much sought after, and visited by the English who were 
then also on their travels; who were delighted with his con- 
versation, notwithstanding that his way of life and manner of 
thinking were very different from their own : and they would often 
ingenuously confess that he was certainly in the right way, and 
that they could not but wish they could live as he lived. 

These gentlemen on their return to England spoke of him in 
the highest terms of applause to their respective families and 
connections. The Italian merchants also and the English factors 
resident in different parts of Italy, with whom he had transac- 
tions on money concerns, all wrote of him to their correspondents 
in England, with the warmest commendations, considering him 
as one who had some great object in view, and would sometime 
appear to the world possessed of very extraordinary talents. 
Thus his reputation became general : on the exchange, in the 
city, at court, and all over the country he was universally known 
and universally admired. 

Having now finished his intended studies, having traversed all 
Italy, and become intimately acquainted with every place of con- 
sequence, being perfect master of the Italian language, both for 
writing and discourse, having an accurate knowledge of all their 
laws, customs, manners, doctrines, and practices, civil and eccle- 
siastic, and having made the best use of every thing he had heard, 
read, or seen, and being determined as to his future plan of con- 
duct, he resolved at last to pay a visit to imperial Rome. He 
knew indeed before he went thither, as much of that celebrated 
city, both ancient and modern, as could be learned from history, 
and from conversation with many persons of great judgment and 
observation, who had lately been there : but he was desirous to 
confirm what he had learned by information from others, by his 
own observation. But having been well informed that since he 
came into Italy, there had been a particular account of him sent 
to Rome, of the college of which he was fellow in Cambridge, of 
his degrees, and his acquisitions in learning, and particularly 
that his person had been described in all points to the college of 

b [This unfortunate gentleman is the person who in the original MS. is 
frequently referred to as Mr. G ] Gorton ? 


Jesuits there ; the manner also in which he had spent his time in 
Italy, with the general conjecture, that he surely had some farther 
end in travelling, than other gentlemen ordinarily have : all this 
duly considered made him keep his intention very private. For 
he foresaw that without great caution some mischief might pro- 
bably befal him. Changing his habit therefore for such a dress 
as he thought was most proper for his disguise, and safety, he set 
forward, concealing the time when, and keeping the place from 
whence he came always unknown to all but one trusty friend only, 

the unfortunate Mr. G , who, whatever should befal him in 

that journey, might give an account of him to his family. He 
travelled on foot, and contrived his business so that he came to 
Rome on the Monday before Easter ; and during his stay there, 
he every day changed his lodgings, coining in late and going out 
early: and as to his repast, such as it was, he took that al><> 
sometimes at one place, sometimes at another, and sometimes at 
none at all. He staid at Rome about ten days, and in that time 
he so improved his opportunities as that he satisfied himself in 
seeing all that he desired. But the particulars need not be here 
recited, as they may be found in many other books upon this 

From Rome he returned to Venice, not acquainting any one 
whore he had been. At his return he was welcomed home by 
the English gentlemen, and all his other acquaintance ; as was 
the custom with them at other times, after his other excursions. 
In one of these, he went to see the chapel of Loretto. From 
thence he went to Malta, where one of the knights conceiving a 
particular friendship for him, at their parting desired his accept- 
ance of one of the rich crosses worn by the brethren of that 
order, entreating him to keep it for his sake ; and thus exchan^in^ 
mutual good wishes and benedictions, Mr. Ferrar returned a_ 
to Venice. 

And now intending at length to leave Italy, he went from 

Venice to Marseilles, purposing after he had passed sufficient 

tiiiM- in that city, for visiting what was remarkable there and in 

th' parts adjacent, to take ship there and sail from thence to 


Hut at Marseilles he fell dangerously ill. being suddenly sei/<-d 
with a violent fever, \\hirli daily grew worse and worse. And 
what added to his misfortune, he knew no one in the place, nor 
liad h an\ of lii> lonu.-r aruuaintanre with him. In this dis- 


tress he sent for the most celebrated physician in the city, and 
trusted himself entirely to his care. He was very regular in his 
attendance, and was very careful of him. His host also and 
hostess where he lodged shewed great tenderness and attention 
to him. 

The first day he was taken ill he wrote to his much loved 
friend whom he had left at Venice, the unfortunate Mr. G., to 
whom he had promised to give information of his arrival at Mar- 
seilles. In this letter he .acquainted him that he was beginning 
to grow ill, and feared his illness would prove both long and dan- 
gerous. Nor was he mistaken, for his illness continued thirty-four 
days, and his physician was for a long time in absolute despair 
of his life. This made his attendants desirous to know who he 
was, which Mr. Ferrar industriously concealed. But one day, as 
they were looking amongst his things for something he had called 
for, carefully wrapped up in a little box, was discovered the rich 
cross which was presented to him by his friend the knight of 
Malta, at his departure from that island. At sight of this, the 
host and hostess, and the physician presently concluded that he 
was a knight of that order, who was travelling unknown, and 
they earnestly entreated him no longer to conceal himself. Mr. 
Ferrar in vain endeavoured to convince them of the mistake, 
assuring them that he was only a private gentleman, travelling 
for amusement and instruction ; for the more he affirmed this, 
the more they were confirmed in their own opinion. His disorder 
still continuing excessive, the physician had given him up for lost. 
But at the very moment when all hope was gone, a favourable 
crisis took place ; and though he was extremely weak and reduced 
to the lowest degree, yet he soon appeared to be in a fair way of 

And now word was brought to him that there was a gentleman 
below, just arrived from Venice, who demanded to see him. They 
who know what true friendship is, need not to be informed that 
this person could be no other than his dear and unfortunate friend 
Mr. G. When he came into Mr. Ferrar's room, and beheld his 
friend lying on the bed of sickness, so pale, weak, and reduced, 
he burst into tears. His friend was equally affected, seeing him 
so unexpectedly. They mutually embraced, and a long, and 
affectionately expressive silence ensued : for their hearts were so 
full, that neither could for some time speak to the other. At 
length Mr. Ferrar told him how welcome he was to him, who but 

VOL. IV. J, 


yesterday expected never to see him more. Mr. G. replied, that 
on rli. receipt of his letter he became so deeply afflicted., that he 
could not rest day or night, till he should see him ; that if he 
should find him still sick, he might abide with him and take care 
of him : that if he should die, he might perform the due honours 
of burial ; and that if he should recover, he might rejoice with 
him on that happy occasion, and in every respect shew him that 
unfeigned friendship which was justly due to his uncommon 

As a sincere and affectionate friend is perhaps the most effec- 
tual medicine that can be administered to the sick, so by the en- 
dearing attentions of the benevolent Mr. G. Mr. Ferrar e 
day advanced apace in his recovery. And when he was thought 
to be out of danger, Mr. G. said he must at last bid him farewell, 
and return to Venice. " Yes," said Mr. Ferrar, "you shall now 
return to Venice, but I will return with you. For as you have 
been so very kind as to come so far to take care of me when I 
was ill, and have likewise staid so long with me, it is but justice, 
and the least return I can make, to see you safe back;" nor 
would he take any refusal ; and so they returned together to 
Venice. From this place Mr. Ferrar immediately gave his pa- 
rents an account of his cruel sickness, and recovery at Mar- 
seilles, in a very affectionate letter bearing date April 1616. 

Having staid at Venice till he was perfectly recovered, and his 
strength thoroughly recruited, he took his last leave of all his 
friends and acquaintance there; but particularly of his dear 
friend Mr. G., who at their parting presented him with an ex- 
cellent and costly rapier, saying that perhaps it might be of 
great use to him in his future travels, and wished him to keep it 
as a testimony of his friendship. And now these dear friends 
with the warmest affection bade each other adieu ! for in the 
gulph of Venice a small English vessel was ready to sail for 
Spain, and Mr. Ferrar resolved to take his passage in her, that 
might travel through Spain, and see that kingdom, after 
\\hich he proposed in like manner to see France, and so return 

Tin- >hip in which Mr. Ferrar left Venice, carried only t< n 
pieces of prdnance, but was overloaded, though there were no 
passengers but himself. They had not been long at sea, before 
a large ship, a Turkish pirate, gave them chace, and gained 
speedily upon thrm. Ami there bein^ >omi- 'lifference of opinion 


between the officers and mariners, whether they ought to yield, 
or fight it out ; they referred their doubts to Mr. Ferrar, who 
had stood silent among them attending to their debate. They 
said, " This young gentleman has a life to lose, as well as we ; 
let us hear what he thinks of the matter." For from his first 
coming on board, upon discourse with him, they had taken a 
great liking to him, perceiving that he had great skill in maritime 

Mr. Ferrar being thus applied to in form for his opinion, reso- 
lutely told them that they ought to fight it out, and put their trust 
in God. That it was better to die valiantly, than be carried into 
slavery. That God could easily deliver them, and he hoped would 
not suffer them to fall into the hands of their enemy. He then 
put them in mind of the many sea engagements achieved by their 
countrymen, in which the victory had been gained against superior 
numbers. Thus encouraged, his words were so prevalent, that 
with all speed they made ready to defend themselves, committing 
their cause to the protection of God. And to shew that they 
were not deficient in English spirit, they, having the advantage 
of the wind, and a fit opportunity, determined to give their enemy 
a broadside : when, lo ! just as the master was giving the word 
to the gunner to fire, the Turkish ship to their great astonishment 
fell off, and steered away from them with all the sail she could 
make. They soon perceived that this unexpected movement was 
from the discovery of another ship, which they supposed was 
thought to be a better booty. The Turk being gone they pro- 
ceeded on their voyage, and without any farther difficulty arrived 
at their destined port in Spain. 

Soon after his arrival, Mr. Ferrar determined to see Madrid, 
and the king's court, and whatever else was worth notice in that 
part of the country. But having spent some time at Madrid, he 
had also spent almost all the money he had brought with him 
from Venice. He therefore made an enquiry whether there 
were any bills of exchange, or letters for him, directed to some of 
the English merchants in that city, but could not hear of any ; 
for he had reached Madrid long before his father thought he 
could be there. In making this enquiry, he carried the matter 
so, as if it was for a gentleman of the name of Ferrar, who, he 
expected, would be there about that time : for he was resolved, if 
possible, not to discover himself. But it happened that a Mr. 

L 2 


Wyche, the son of a merchant 7 , a particular friend of Mr. Ferraris 
father, was at that time at Madrid. And he being informed that 
this young gentleman and stranger made frequent enquiry after 
one of the name of Ferrar, kept an observant eye upon him. 
And perceiving something very extraordinary in his genteel 
deportment, in the wisdom, and the wit of his conversation, and 
his great knowledge in languages, he concluded him to be some 
person of high fashion, who was desirous to travel unknown : and 
thereupon, both himself, and all the English established there, 
made him an offer of all the civilities in their power. 

But as he was now at a stand how to proceed, and what course 
to take in order to pass through Spain, and then through France 
home, and being uneasy that no bills of exchange were come for 
such a one as he enquired after, he suddenly determined to travel 
no farther at present ; but immediately to make the best of his 
way to England, and in order to this, to travel on foot as well as 
he could to St. Sebastian's, and there take ship for his native 

In preparation for this expedition, as he still resolved, if pos- 
sible, to keep himself unknown, he privately sold his cloak, and 
some jewels which he had by him, to supply his present occasions, 
and provide for his future wants in his journey. At quitting 
Madrid he took leave of Mr. Wyche, and the other English 
merchants, with acknowledgments of their many civilities to him. 
At which time Mr. Wyche made him an offer of what money he 
might want, which Mr. Ferrar politely declined. 

And now he set forward on foot, with the rich rapier in his hand, 
presented to him by his dear friend Mr. G., without a cloak, in 
his doublet and cassock. And with many a weary step, and very 
few accommodations, he pursued his journey, till he found his 
feet after a few days' travelling on the hot sands of that country 
t" Ix'come quite wearied, and the skin to come off, so that it was 
excessively painful to him to proceed. One night his hostess 
where he lodged, seeing he was a young foot traveller, and that 
he suffered greatly from the torment of his feet, prescribed to 
him to bathe and steep his feet for a considerable time in a bowl 

7 Son of a merchant.'] Richard Wyche, of an old Cheshire family, was a 
merchant of high note in London. He had twelve sons, one of whom, Peter, 
(afterwards sir Peter Wyche, for many years ambassador at Constantinople), 
is probably the person here mentioned. 


of sack which she brought for that purpose. This gave him 
immediate ease, and enabled him to proceed comfortably on his 
journey the next morning, and by future applications prevented 
all future inconveniences of that sort. 

His reason for travelling always with his rapier in his hand, 
was not only to be instantly on his defence in case of any 
sudden attack, but that he might also pass the more readily in 
all places as a young gentleman soldier, going towards Flanders 
to serve the king of Spain, under Spinola 8 . And upon the way 
at all fit times, and places, as he travelled, he seemed to be very 
inquisitive about Spinola, and what he was doing in Flanders ; so 
that all with whom he had any discourse of this sort took him 
for an Italian. But at one place where he passed the night, the 
governor being informed of a stranger who lodged in the town, 
examined him strictly in many particulars. And Mr. Ferrar 
made him such wary answers, that he was at a loss what farther 
to say to him. At last, casting his eyes upon the rapier, he told 
him that costly rapier was unbefitting him, for he knew not how 
he came by it, and therefore he would have it from him. Mr. 
Ferrar told him he must pardon him in not parting with his 
weapon, which a soldier ought to preserve as his life ; adding that 
it was given him by a dear and worthy friend, who enjoined him 
to keep it, and that he was determined so to do. But this did 
not satisfy the governor, who told him that stout as he was he 
should deliver the rapier to him before he departed, or he would 
make him repent his refusal. Mr. Ferrar replied, that he hoped 
there was more justice to be found every where in Spain, than to 
take by force an innocent traveller's weapon from him. That he 
had not in any thing offended Caesar, or his laws, or the customs 
of his country since he was in it, and that he would be cautious 
not to do so during the remainder of his stay. That he came 
very lately from the king's court, and that he had friends there 
who would not suffer him to receive any wrong. From this wise 
and resolute answer, his determined behaviour, and a style of 
language so far above his outward appearance, the standers-by 
concluded him to be some other man than his habit declared, and 
advised the governor to meddle no more with him about the 

8 Under Spinola.'] The marquis Ambrogio Spinola, the celebrated com- 
mander of the Spanish forces in the war which broke out in 1614, caused by 
the disputed succession to the duchies of Juliers and Cleves. 


rapier. Who, then addressing himself to Mr. Ferrar, said, 
41 Well, I perceive you are a young Italian gentleman, and enquire 
after our affairs in Flanders, and after the marquis Spinola your 
countryman, to whom I understand you are going. I like well 
your weapon, which in truth is most handsome and soldierlike ;" 
and so he dismissed him to proceed on his journey. 

While Mr. Ferrar travelled thus alone over a great part of 
Spain, he walked once half a day without seeing any body, and 
was therefore obliged to guess at his way, by the best observation 
he could make, to proceed straight forward from the place where 
he had lodged the night before. A nd it being now near evening, 
he perceived tliat the road he was in led him to a very high hill, 
which at length he with no small pains and difficulty ascended : 
and being arrived at the top, he there found a round plat of level 
ground, of considerable magnitude, encompassed entirely with 
rocks of a prodigious height, and extremely steep on every side, 
neither could he discern any pathway, except that by which he 
had ascended, to lead him out from this rocky enclosure, and 
thereby encourage him to go forward. 

At the sight of this he was much troubled, thinking he had 
wholly mistaken the hill which he had been directed to ascend, 
and that he must at last take up his unhoused lodging there that 
night. Being thus perplexed, and not knowing what to do, he 
devoutly knelt down, and prayed to God to protect and direct 
him. Then examining with careful anxiety all parts, to see if he 
could find any way to help him forward in his journey, for it was 
too late to think of returning, he espied a large black hog come 
hastily running out from a narrow crevice or cleft in the rock, 
and immediately disappear again. But he with his eyes observed, 
and with his feet made all possible haste to follow and see what 
was become of the beast. For he conceived hopes that it might 
be some tame animal, now in the evening returning to its home, 
and consequently that possibly there was some dwelling-house 
not far off. Presently he saw the same creature again, now 
running at the further end of the level plain down the side oi 
hill. And, coming to the spot, he perceived a hollow, covered 
passage, cut into the solid rock, and at some distance v.ithin this 
hollow, a sort of window or air-hole, to give light and air to this 
Mjl.r. -i -ram an passage. Resolving therefore to follow the animal 
which h< jilaiiil\ MLW to eater this cavity, after some time, and 
very caution found a turning which - 


step more and more dark. Yet stopping a little while, listening, 
and still looking and venturing slowly more forward, he discerned, 
as he thought, a glimmering of more light at a distance. So he 
went on, and found it to be another window or air-hole, cut 
like the former through the solid rock to give farther light to the 
subterranean passage. Thus proceeding onwards, in the same 
manner, and under the same disagreeable circumstances, he at 
length plainly perceived that this passage was a way to some sub- 
terranean habitation, cut by human labour into the heart of the 
rock. Thereupon listening and proceeding with caution, he 
fancied that he heard the voices of people talking at no great 
distance. Eesolving therefore to go forward again, he found at 
length that there was indeed a sort of house in the very substance 
of the rock, and that it was a harbour, or place of entertainment 
for passengers who travelled that way. 

Coming into the room he saluted the host, and the people who 
were there ; and sitting down he called for bread and wine, and 
then began to discourse with them how hard it was to find the 
way to them ; which, they said, to a stranger, must be indeed 
extremely difficult, but was not so to those who were acquainted 
with the turns and windings of that subterraneous labyrinth. He 
then called for more wine to wash and bathe his feet. Which 
done, after some communication of ordinary matters, such as 
travellers use with their hosts, he made strict observation of the 
disposition and manners of the people in the house, and found 
great reason not very well to like them ; but now there was no 

As for the people, they thought him to be a young Italian 
soldier, going to the marquis Spinola. For that way his conver- 
sation much tended, and shewed that he was well acquainted with 
all the military transactions in Flanders with the Hollanders. At 
length he told them that he was very weary and very sleepy, and, 
if they pleased, would lie down upon a bench, and take some rest. 
For that, he pretended, was his custom when he travelled, in 
order to inure himself to hardships. 

Thereupon they shewed him into another room within the 
cavern ; and Mr. Ferrar, not laying his rapier away, but keeping 
it close to him, lay down to sleep. But he was scarce laid down, 
when two lusty, ruffian-looking fellows and a young woman came 
into the room. Mr. Ferrar heard and saw them, but lay still, as 
if he was fast asleep. The men then demanded of the people of 


the house, " Who is this here, who lies sleeping upon the bench 2" 
they answered, u We know not ; he is lately come in very weary, 
and says he is a young Italian soldier, who is going into Flanders, 
to serve under Spinola." And then they entered into some con- 
versation in a very low voice, which Mr. Ferrar could not hear. 

After this they sat down at a table at the farther end of the 
room, and in a bold manner began to call for various things, and 
in drinking their wine they discoursed of different matters, and at 
length grew very merry. But at last one of the fellows went out, 
and after a short time came in again, and then after some slight 
and foolish words began to quarrel with the woman. She gave 
him as cross words in return, and their other companion taking 
her part, from words they came to blows, and began to lay hands 
on the woman. Whereupon she crying out, the host came run- 
ning in, but instead of being appeased by him, they grew more 
and more fierce. All this Mr. Ferrar heard and saw, but 
appeared as if he was in a sound sleep, and kept his hand fast 
upon his rapier. They called to him for help, but he regarded 
not their brawling, still making as if he was dead asleep. There- 
fore as he continued to lie still, and seemed to take no notice of 
them, their contention ceased, and they all went out of the room 
in very friendly terms together. 

Mr. Ferrar saw all this was done to provoke him to rise, and 
take one part or other, that so they might have quarrelled with 
him, and carried into execution some bad design against him. But 
he heard no more of them ; and not being able to sleep, he rose 
at day-break, and made haste away, giving God thanks for his 
escape out of their hands. 

After his escape from this subterranean abode, having travelled 
five hundred miles in Spain, in the heat of summer, alone, and on 
foot, making his observations on the country, its curiosities, and 
productions, and on the disposition and manners of the people, 
he at length arrived safely at St. Sebastian's. Here he found a 
ship ready to sail for England, but waiting for a fair wind. In 
this interval he received great civilities from the captain of the 
vessel, and from all the English settled at that place. At len.Lfth 
the wind came fair, and after a few days 1 happy passage he landed 
at Dover, \\liere he returned his sincere thanks to God for bring- 
ing him in health and safety to his native country. 

\\e are now no longer to consider Mr. Ferrar as a young gen- 
tlcman travelling for amusement and instruction, displaying every 


where uncommon abilities, illustrious virtue, and indefatigable 
industry, exciting the highest admiration, and receiving in every 
country universal applause ; but we shall now see him the man of 
business, applying, with unwearied attention, the great talents with 
which God had blessed him, to important negotiations both of a 
private and a public nature. 

His return was at a very critical time. For one branch of his 
family was in great distress, and stood in need of his care and 
wisdom. His brother John Ferrar was likewise entered into 
a great public employment, by which he became engaged in 
many affairs which required his assistance. For sir Edwyn 
Sandys being chosen governor of the Virginia company, Mr. 
John Ferrar was made king's counsel for that plantation. He 
therefore left the management of his concerns in merchandise to 
his friends and partners. And the Virginia courts after this were 
kept at the house of Mr. Ferrar the father : who from his singu- 
lar affection for that honourable company, himself being one of 
the first adventurers of that plantation and the Somers Islands 9 , 
allowed them the use of his great hall, and other best rooms of 
his house to hold their weekly and daily meetings. Many other 
things both of public and private concernment, now on foot, 
seemed equally to call for the presence and assistance of Mr. N. 
Ferrar. For (not to speak of public matters) to all human 
appearance, without his advice, diligence, and great wisdom in 
managing the private affairs of his family at this critical juncture, 
there had been great danger not only of much loss in many 
particulars, but even of the overthrow and ruin of his elder 

Immediately after his arrival at Dover Mr. Ferrar rode post to 
London ; and finding the door of his fathers house open, he en- 
tered with his rich rapier at his side, arrayed only in his cassock 
and doublet, and just in the manner as he had travelled from 
Madrid to St. Sebastian's. 

The meeting between the worthy parents and their beloved son, 
whom they had not seen for five years, and whom they had ex- 
pected never to have seen again, was mutually affectionate and 

9 Somers Islands.'] The Bermudas, called also the Somers Islands, in honour 
of sir George Somers, one of the Virginia Company, to whom they belonged. 
The family name was corrupted by ignorant chartographers into Summer 
Islands, a blunder which the French have made tenfold more absurd by call- 
ing them the Isles de VEtt. 


endearing in the highest degree, and may more easily be imagined 
than described. This his unexpected and much wished for return 
was in the year 1618; he himself being then twenty-six, his 
father seventy-two, and his mother sixty-two years of age. 

He soon shewed himself upon the Exchange, and in person re- 
turned his thanks to those merchants by whose factors he had 
received his remittances, and many local civilities. He was now 
much noticed both for the beauty of his person, and for his 
many eminent qualities: and all his friends soon found that the 
accounts they had received of his worth and wisdom from abroad 
had not been exaggerated, but that his virtues and his accom- 
plishments surpassed all report and all expectation. 

In his travels through Holland, Germany, Italy, and Spain, 
Mr. Ferrar purchased many rare articles of curiosity, many 
scarce and valuable books, and learned treatises in the languages 
of those different countries. In collecting which he certainly had 
a principal eye to those which treated the subjects of a spiritual 
life, devotion, and religious retirement. He bought also a very 
great number of prints engraved by the best masters of that 
time ; all relative to historical passages of the Old and New Tes- 
tament. Indeed he let nothing of this sort that was valuable 
escape him. And this great treasure of rarities, books, and 
prints, upon his return home, he had the satisfaction to find were 
safely arrived there before him. 

Very little indeed of this treasure is now remaining. The 
Ferrar family being firm in their loyalty to the king, their house 
at Gidding was plundered in the civil wars ; and in a wanton de- 
vastation, all these things perished, except some of the prints, not 
of great value, still in possession of the editor. 

It now comes in the order of time to speak of the great hand 
which Mr. N. Ferrar had, immediately after his return, in the 
management of the affairs of the Virginia company; in which. 
by his prudent conduct, he got through many and great diffi- 
culties with high credit and reputation. From this relation it 
will appear what great power Gondomar f the Spanish ambassador 
thru had in England; and how by his extraordinary craft and 

1 Gondomar.] Don Diego Sarmiento de Acuna, Conde de Gondomar. It 

is needless to say here any thing of his great influence over James. \\ I 

have seen (p. 83) that during all the course of Elizabeth's reign, she would 

hold no dip'.HiMtir , with Spain. Elizabeth and Philip held each 

id's point. 


various intrigues he in the end wrought upon a weak prince to 
suppress one of the most flourishing companies for commerce in 
England. And it may possibly give the reader some satisfaction 
to see some of his subtle proceedings here unravelled ; as this 
affair is hardly touched by any other author 2 . 

Soon after Mr. Ferrar's return, sir Edwyn Sandys, who had 
heard a high character of him from many who had known him in 
Italy, sought his acquaintance ; and being exceedingly taken with 
his great abilities, took the first opportunity to make him known 
to the earl of Southampton, and the other principal members of 
the Virginia company. In a very little time he was made one of 
a particular committee in some business of great importance ; 
whereby the company having sufficient proof of his extraordinary 
abilities, at the next general court it was proposed and agreed 
that he should be king^s counsel 3 for the Virginia plantation in 
the place of his brother John, who was then made the deputy 
governor. And when his name, according to custom, was entered 
in the lord chamberlain's book, sir Edwyn Sandys took care to 
acquaint that lord with his uncommon worth ; which indeed daily 
more and more appeared in every thing he undertook : and as he 
wanted no ability, so he spared no diligence in ordering all their 
affairs of consequence. And thus he became deeply engaged in 
cares of a public nature. Yet his own inclinations at his return 
led him rather to think of settling himself again at Cambridge, 
to which he was the more induced, as he still held the physic 
fellowship in Clare Hall. But this he now saw could not be done. 
Besides, his parents, now grown old, requested their beloved son 
to remain with them. Therefore all he could obtain in this re- 
spect from them, and from his business, was the liberty now and 
then to pass a few days with his old acquaintance and friends still 
remaining in Cambridge. 

At this time, J619, Mr. Henry Briggs, the celebrated mathe- 
matician and reader of Geometry at Gresham college, and one of 
the Virginia company, being about to leave London, and settle at 

2 By any other author.'] [This was said about the year 1654.] 

3 King's counsel.'] It is very probable that, in this capacity, Nicholas Ferrar 
had more than a share in drawing up the following work, which is very rare, 
but of which a copy is preserved in the British Museum. " A Declaration 
of the State of the Colony and Affaires in Virginia, with the Names of the Ad- 
venturers and Summes adventured in that Action. By His Maiesties Counseil 
for Virginia, 22 Junii, 1620." 4to. 


Oxford as Savilian professor there, recommended it to the Mer- 
cers' company, who had the gift of that professorship, that they 
should by all means offer the place to Mr. Ferrar upon his own 
terms, saying, that he was the ablest proficient he knew in that 
science. The offer was made accordingly, which he modestly 
declined, saying his friend Mr. Briggs was much mistaken in him, 
and that his affection and goodness to him had misled his judg- 
ment. He therefore prayed them to appoint some more worthy 
person ; but that for himself though he declined the intended 
honour, he would always be ready to serve the city of London, 
and the magnificent foundation of sir Thomas Gresham, to the 
utmost of his power. 

While sir Edwyn Sandys continued governor, the reputation 
of the Virginia company rose very high under his prudent ma- 
nagement. But having now served his year, and being by the 
general voice intended to have been elected again, by some secret 
power at court, all the measures were broken that had been before 
taken for that purpose. 

It was appointed by the charter of the company that there 
should be every year in Easter term a new election of a treasurer 
or governor, and a deputy, and that no man should hold either of 
those places more than three years. This election was now 
intended to be made by ballot, a method introduced by sir Ed- 
wyn Sandys, as most likely to secure a free election. A general 
court day being appointed, and the day and hour of election being 
come, there were assembled near upon twenty great peers of the 
land ; near a hundred of the most eminent knights of the king- 
dom ; of gallant gentlemen many colonels and captains, and 
renowned lawyers near a hundred more ; and of the most worthy 
citizens a very respectable assembly. So that the court consisted 
of near five hundred persons of several ranks, and quality. 
Every thing being prepared, the three persons who were to be 
candidates for the place of governor were now to be named by tin- 
company. The three persons being agreed upon, the name of 
sir Kdwyn Sandys was first set up, and as this was doing, a lord 
of the bed-chamber and another courtier stood up, and declared 
to the court that it was the king's pleasure not to have sir Edwyn 
lys chosen ; and because he would not infringe their right of 
election, he would nominate three persons, and permit the com- 
pany to choose one of them. 

At this unexpected message there was for a considerable time 


a deep silence, every man present standing in amazement at this 
violent invasion of their rights, this breach of their charter, and 
stretch of tyrannic power. At length some at the lower end of 
the hall stood up, and prayed that the courtiers having delivered 
their message, and consequently having nothing more to say, 
might withdraw, till the company had resolved what to do. 

The earl of Southampton (Henry Wriothesley) then stood up 
and said, " For my part, gentlemen, I like not this motion : let 
the noble gentlemen if they please keep their places, and sit and 
hear the opinions of the company, that so they may be both ear 
and eye witnesses of our actions, and words, and may themselves 
by these means truly inform his majesty of our fair and justifia- 
ble way of proceeding in this weighty business : a business of the 
highest concernment both in respect of his majesty, and in respect 
of the company. In respect of his majesty, whom we know to 
be so just a king, that he may understand what privileges he hath 
granted us by his letters patent, under the great seal of England : 
on the credit and authority of which letters, we have advanced 
and adventured one hundred thousand pounds of our own estates : 
and in respect of the company, who have gained so hopeful a 
country, which they have bought, and compounded for with the 
natives, and which when once well peopled by English colonies, 
will find full employment for all needy people in this land, who 
now begin to swarm in this blessed time of peace under his ma- 
jesty's happy reign ; will provide estates likewise for all the 
younger brothers, gentlemen of this kingdom ; and also a ready 
and lasting supply to this nation of those commodities which in 
our present condition we are fain to fetch from foreign nations, 
from doubtful friends, yea from heathen princes. These circum- 
stances, I say, fairly considered, make this a business of so great 
concernment, that it can never be too solemnly, too thoroughly, 
or too publicly examined." 

Lord Southampton having thus spoken sat down, and after 
some silence sir Laurence Hyde, the learned lawyer, next rose 
up and said, " May it please this honourable society, I for my 
part not only agree to that motion now made by the noble earl 
who spoke last, but also desire the company not only to permit, 
but even to intreat these worthy messengers of the king to stay 
in our court, and I will be thus farther bold to break the ice, 
and to give you my opinion that the first step we ought to take 
in this serious business now in hand should be to cause the 


patent, as the foundation of all our proceedings, to be here imme- 
diately produced, and read, before this honourable assembly, and 
these worthy gentlemen the king's messengers. And then both 
we and they shall all soon be satisfied in the extent of our pri- 
vileges, and in the strength of his majesty's grant, which he hath 
made to us under the great seal of England, and under the hand 
and honour of a king." 

Thereupon, all instantly cried out, u The patent ! The patent ! 
God save the king." The patent was then openly and distinctly 
read by the secretary. 

After which sir Laurence Hyde stood up again and said, 
"Gentlemen, I pray you all to observe well the words of the 
patent in the point of electing a governor. You see it is thereby 
left to your own free choice. This I take it is so very plain and 
evident that we shall not need to say any thing more to it. And 
no doubt these gentlemen, when we shall have done our duty, 
and they depart, will give his majesty a just information of tin- 
case, and undeceive him in the unjust misrepresentations which 
have been given him in this point." 

The rest of the many lawyers who were there concurred in 
opinion with sir Laurence Hyde, and the court voted that they 
should now immediately proceed to election. When a friend of 
sir Edwyn Sandys, sir Robert Phillips, who sat behind him, and 
to whom sir Edwyn had whispered, stood up and craved of them 
before they proceeded, to hear him a word, or two, and then said. 

u I shall consent that we go to an election out of hand, because 
it is the business of the day, and if we do it not now, we may 
thereby in my opinion forfeit our patent; and also that we in.iv 
liy so doing shew our duty to the king, in order to satisfy him in 
all that we may : which, as I am instructed by this worthy gen- 
tleman your late governor, may be done, if you will out of your 
own judgments, at present forbear to set up his name (whom I 
perceive you all think and know most worthy to be continued in 
that office) and put up two or three names of the persons reomn- 
niendrd l.y his majesty. And let these managers tlicm> l\c>. if 
they think fit, nominate which two they please. And in order in 
some degree to preserve your own privileges, do you then name a 
third person. And then let all these three names be set upon 
thr balloting box, and so go to the election in (Jod's nann-. and 
li-t hi-, \\ill In- don.-." 

Thriviipon with a <n-n<-ral acclamation, not one WMC6 a-^ain-t 


it, the whole court cried out " Southampton ! Southampton !" 
At which my lord of Southampton rose up to speak. But they 
again cried out, "The time is almost past, we most humbly 
beseech your lordship not to interrupt our proceedings." 

The king's messengers then said, they must confess that the 
company proceeded wisely ; and that if they had the nomination 
of two out of three, as sir Robert Phillips proposed, they doubted 
not but his majesty would be satisfied. For as sir Edwyn Sandys 
had wisely waved his interest, if the king desired no more than 
that he might not be chosen, the course proposed to be taken 
was likely to please him. And so they proceeded to the ballot ; 
when of the two persons nominated by the king's messengers, one 
of them had only one ball, and the other but two. The earl of 
Southampton had all the rest. Lord Southampton then took 
the chair, and they proceeded to the choice of a deputy, when Mr. 
John Ferrar was chosen by the same majority ; of that large 
company, consisting of near five hundred persons, only three 
dissenting. And thus began the year 1620. 

The earl of Southampton, now elected governor of the Virginia 
company, had a particular friendship with sir Edwyn Sandys, and 
took this office conditionally that his friend should continue his 
advice and assistance in the business of the company. So that 
there were now three very able men engaged, lord Southampton, 
sir Edwyn Sandys, and Mr. Nicholas Ferrar. Lord Southampton 
celebrated for wisdom, eloquence, and sweet deportment ; sir 
Edwyn Sandys for great knowledge, and integrity ; and Nicholas 
Ferrar for wonderful abilities, unwearied diligence, and the 
strictest virtue. 

The latter was now fully employed in drawing up instructions 
concerning all the various business respecting the plantation, in 
writing all letters of advice to the colony in Virginia, and in 
being constantly one in every committee. Which instructions 
and letters being always read in the open courts, gained him 
universal approbation. The civilians, the common lawyers, the 
divines, (of which last dean Williams, afterwards bishop of Lin- 
coln 4 , was one) who attended these courts, when acquainted with 
Mr. Ferrar's performances, all spoke of him in highest terms of 
commendation. The merchants and tradesmen, when he had 

4 Bishop of Lincoln^] John Williams, afterwards lord keeper and archbishop 
of York, of whom see more in the Life of Bishop Hall. 


occasion to speak of their matters, even the sea officers, and 
mariners, when he gave directions about the victualling and order- 
ing the ships or other naval affairs, all were in the highest admi- 
ration of his abilities and accurate knowledge of every thing 
relating to their respective professions. And now under the 
management and direction of lord Southampton, sir Edwyn 
Sandys, and Mr. Nicholas Ferrar, the affairs of the Virginia plan- 
tation were soon in the most flourishing situation. 

At this time there was in London a Mr. Copeland, a minister 
in the Somers Islands, who contracted a great intimacy with 
Mr. Ferrar. He was a worthy man, and very zealous for the 
conversion of the infidel natives of America. He had many con- 
ferences with Mr. Ferrar upon this subject, and the best way and 
means to effect it ; and he seriously informed sir E. Sandys and 
others of the company, that he verily believed Mr. Ferrar was 
determined some time to leave the whole world, and settle in 
Virginia ; and there employ the extraordinary talents with which 
God had blessed him, and spend his life in the conversion of the 
natives, or other infidels in that country : adding, " If he should 
do so, I will never forsake him, but wait upon him in that glorious 
work." This I think is a strong presumptive proof, that notwith- 
standing Mr. Ferraris great abilities in different occupations, and 
his wonderful proficiency in various acquisitions of science, and 
other accomplishments, yet that the peculiar bent, and deter- 
mination of his mind was uniformly given to the promotion of the 
Christian religion. 

At this time (April, 1620) died Mr. Ferrar the father, who 
made his son Nicholas his sole executor ; which was a great addi- 
tion to the business already lying upon him : but he had abilities 
equal to any thing, and to every thing ; with firmness of mind and 
integrity equal to his ability. Mr. Ferrar sen. by his will gave 
300J. towards erecting a school or college in Virginia for the 
better education of such infidel children as should be there con- 
verted to the Christian religion. He was buried in the church of 
I Jennet Sherhog, April 11, and his old friend Dr. Francis 
White, whom he brought from the obscurity of the country into 
a more public life, preached his funeral sermon to a crouded 
audience; in which he described him as a second Nathaniel. 
"an Israelite indeed, in whom was no guile." 

Tin- Virginia plantation, now under the government of the earl 
1* Southampton, became every day oHi^ier reputation, and tin- 


affairs of the company in consequence every day of more weighty 
importance. So that Mr. Ferrar, both as counsel 5 to the com- 
pany, and assistant also to his brother as deputy governor, was 
pressed by a double weight of care : as the company would not 
permit the deputy to resign till he had executed his office three 
years; which he did 1619, under sir Edwyn Sandys, and 1620, 
1621, under the earl of Southampton. 

But now the increasing fame of this company, and the wise 
management of it was carried into Spain, and caused no small 
alarm. The politicians there saw, or pretended to see danger in 
the course of not many years. Virginia was too near them, both 
by sea and land : and they did not know but the people of that 
plantation, when once a little settled, might perhaps be looking 
over the hills, and at length spy out their rich mines. Gondomar 
therefore had it in commission to have a special eye upon the 
company, and the managers of their affairs. And he was indeed 
a vigilant observer of his instructions. He not only gained an 
absolute influence over the king, but many great men about him, 
whom he had bought with Spanish money : these were very 
powerful, and well known at court by the name of the Spanish 

Gondomar and the king had now agreed upon the destruction 
of the Virginia company. Notice of their dishonourable designs 
was given to lord Southampton and sir Edwyn Sandys, by the 
marquis of Hamilton and the earl of Pembroke ; who privately 
warned them to look well to themselves, and their proceedings, 
for that many stratagems were now in train, and would be pushed 
to the utmost to procure the destruction of the plantation, and to 
ruin all persons who should be employed in supporting the affairs 
of the company. 

This opportune advice produced a double care and watchfulness 
in the managers, if possible, to prevent the intended mischief. 
But it would be endless here to relate the many discouragements, 
the dark intrigues, and shameful practices which they now daily 
met and encountered. These things require another time and 
place. All that need here be said is that the Virginia business 
was now no pastime, nor were the managers in any respect per- 
mitted to be idle. 

In the Easter term, 1622, Mr. John Ferrar, having been con- 

6 As counsel.'] See p. 155, note. 



tinued deputy governor three years, Nicholas Ferrar was elected 
to succeed him. For lord Southampton plainly told the deputa- 
tion from the company, who waited on him to desire he would 
consent to be re-elected, that if they did not choose Mr. Nicholas 
Ferrar to be the deputy governor, he could not any longer take 
the office of governor upon him ; saying that he was the only 
person who was able to go through with the business; and to 
encounter all those great and potent oppositions, which he knew 
either were, or very soon would be raised against the company 
and the plantation : and that without Mr. Ferraris assistance all 
would fall to ruin. " You all," he continued, " see, and know his 
abilities and his integrity as well as I. On condition of his being 
deputy, I will be your governor: but he must be the person who 
must act both mine and his own part also. Without him I dare 
not accept the office : with him, I will do all I can to serve you." 

These things being thus settled, the meetings at Mr. Ferrari 
house began again to be crouded, as usual; and Gondomar 
exerted double diligence, procuring, by Spanish gold, spies, who 
informed him of every thing that was done at these meetings ; 
and, what added greatly to his influence, the Spanish party at 
court carried every thing with a high hand. 

Many shameful stratagems were now attempted against the 
company, to throw their affairs into confusion, and to dishearten 
them on all sides. Particularly their privilege in point of cus- 
toms (which was to pay only 5 per cent.) was now questioned, 
and 15 per cent, demanded. One Jacobs also, who had procured 
a licence for importing Spanish tobacco, was now employed and 
supported by the great men in the pay of Gondomar to infriiiLrr 
the company's patent : which encreased Mr. Ferraris trouble to 
a great degree, and made it necessary for him to resort frequently 
to the council table, and to sir Tho. Coventry the king^s attorney 

The hardship and the injustice put upon the company in this 
last article only was very great, as the profit arising from Virginia 
tobacco, was as yet the only return which the planters had to 
answer all their trouble, expence, and hazard. For little progress 
had l>'< -n mado in the several plans of improvement, as the conse- 
quencM s <>!' tin- fir>t massacre* by the savages, were not yet fully 

Thffirtt matsacre.] [That massacre was perpetrated on Friday, March 22, 
1621, at which time the iavages killed 347 persons. There were then mur- 


By Mr. Ferrar's care and industry things seemed, notwith- 
standing this violence and injustice, to be getting again in a fair 
way towards a lasting settlement. But alas ! the Spanish match 7 
for the prince was now set on foot, and Gondomar took advantage 
of that opportunity to exert his absolute power over the king ; 
who meanly suffered himself, in violation of his patent, and the 
honour of a king, to be made this crafty minister's instrument to 
effect the ruin of the company. 

The marquis of Hamilton and the earl of Pembroke solemnly 
affirmed to the earl of Southampton, that they heard Gondomar 
say to the king, " That it was time for him to look to the 
Virginia courts which were kept at the Ferrars 1 house, where too 
many of his nobility and gentry resorted to accompany the 
popular lord Southampton, and the dangerous Sandys. That 
though they might have a fair pretence for their meetings, yet he 
would find in the end that court would prove a seminary for a 
seditious parliament. That they were deep politicians, and had 
farther designs than a tobacco plantation. That their proceed- 
ings in the issue might cause, if not timely prevented, occasions 
of difference between his majesty, and his master the king of 
Spain. For he had heard rumours, that once being become 
numerous, they intended to step beyond their limits; and for 
aught he knew, they might visit his masters mines. Adding, 
that he had occasion of late to have a conference with the 
managers concerning a ship laden with silver, which was cast 
away ; and that he found them subtle men, men of high courage, 

dered at Mr. William Ferrar's house these ten persons : Mr. John England, 
and John his servant; John Bell, Henry Paterson, and Alice his wife, and 
William her son ; Thomas their servant, James Woodshaw, and Mary and 
Elizabeth, maid-servants. Declaration of the present State of Virginia. 
London, 1622. 4to. p. 1437.] 

7 Spanish match.'] The infanta Dona Maria had been offered to prince 
Charles, by the Spanish minister, the duke of Lerma, in the lifetime of her 
father, Philip III., and his views were seconded by Gondomar, the Spanish, 
and by Digby, the English ambassador. On the death of Philip, in 1622, 
James and Charles wrote to Philip IV. and to the Conde Duque de Olivares, 
his favourite; Digby, created earl of Bristol, went to accelerate the negociation; 
Gondomar returned to Spain for the same purpose, and a favourable answer 
was returned from Philip, who agreed to the marriage of his sister, and pro- 
mised to intercede in behalf of Frederic, the elector palatine, the son-in-law 
of James. In February, 1623, Charles and Buckingham, attended only by 
sir Francis Cottington, Endimion Porter, and sir Richard Graham, proceeded 
on their apparently clandestine and pseudo-romantic expedition to Madrid. 

M 2 


men who no way regarded either his master or their own." 
These lords therefore advised lord Southampton to be upon his 
guard ; and hade him and his deputy prepare for the rencounter ; 
for that it would certainly come to the push of pike ; and that 
they feared, as matters now stood, the company would be dis- 
solved, and under some pretence or other their patent taken 
away. The creatures of Gondomar also insinuated to the king, 
that the matter was too high and great for private men to 
manage: that it was therefore proper for the king to take it 
into his own hand, and to govern and order it both at home and 
abroad according to his own will and pleasure. 

After a short time a commission was granted by the king to 
some known enemies to the company to disturb and teaze them 
by vexatious examinations. And one captain Butler, whom the 
company had removed from his office for scandalous mismanage- 
ment and injustice, was suborned, and made an instrument to 
spread disadvantageous reports of the country itself, as being 
unfit to be planted, as being extremely unhealthy, and entirely 

Before these commissioners Mr. Ferrar often appeared in 
defence of the company, and exerted himself with such firmness 
and force of argument, not only face to face to the accusers, but 
by such unanswerable deductions in writing, that the commis- 
sioners were not able to proceed: all their allegations being 
demonstrated by him to be false and frivolous. The matter 
therefore was brought from them before the council table. And 
then Mr. Ferrar, and the company were forced to attend there 
twice or thrice a week for half a year together, in order to weary 
them out by a vexatious persecution. But notwithstanding all 
these infamous machinations, nothing could be taken hold of to 
wrest the patent from the company. They were often indeed 
required to lay it down ; but this they refused to do. 

At this time, though there were many able men of the company 
ready to defend their just cause, yet the lords of the council 
insisted that the deputy, being, as they said, the representative 
of tin- company, should be the only person to answer their objec- 
tions. And this they did on seeing him so young a man, thinking 
from that circumstance to gain some advantage over him. But 
he answered them all with that singular wisdom and modesty, 
that accurate knowledge of affairs, that discretion, firmness and 
<-lM|uciic.-. that the mercenaries of Gondomar were confounded; 


and then by a new and unexpected artifice, and in pretended 
admiration of his great abilities, said it was pity but that he 
should be taken off from his present business, and employed in 
public affairs of more weighty importance. 

Accordingly overtures were made, and a negociation entered 
upon with lord Southampton and sir Edwyn Sandys, to prevail 
with them to persuade Mr. Ferrar to accept the place of clerk 
of the council, or (leiger) 8 envoy to the duke of Savoy, which 
of the two employments he himself liked best. He modestly 
declined the offer, saying his abilities were not sufficient for a 
post of such weighty importance. His friends continued to press 
him, and he to refuse. At length he told them that he could not 
accept of such preferment ; that his thoughts lay quite another 
way. But seeing their importunity continue, he in confidence 
to his two great friends, and on their promise of secrecy, declared 
to them his solemn determination, when he should have discharged 
the duties of his present situation, to enter upon a state of religious 

The council finding that the company were still resolved not 
to part with their patent, or with the liberty which they thereby 
had to govern their own affairs, now took a more severe and not 
less unjust course. They confined lord Southampton to his 
house, that he might not come to the Virginia courts, of which 
he was the legal governor. But this only made the company 
more resolute in their own just defence. They then ordered 
sir Edwin Sandys into a similar confinement. But this step in 
no degree abated the resolution of the company. Then the lords, 
under the influence of Gondomar, strongly pressed the company 
to give up their patent. The marquis of Hamilton and the earl 
of Pembroke informed lord Southampton and sir Edwyn Sandys 
of these proceedings, saying, That Nicholas Ferrar, though now 
left as it were alone, was too hard for all his opposers. " But," 
continued they, " your enemies will prevail at last ; for let the 
company do what they can, in open defiance of honour, and 
justice, it is absolutely determined at all events to take away your 

But Gondomar and his instruments, finding that their violent 
measures had not the desired effect upon the company, now 
vehemently urged the king to take the plantation into his own 

8 Leiger envoy.'] See p. 90, note. 


hands, as a thing befitting a king : and particularly as being a 
measure that would be most acceptable to the king of Spain. 

Still however the same unjust persecution of the company was 
carried on ; and Mr. Ferrar still remained unanswerable in his 
defence. When one day the lord treasurer Cranfield 9 in great 
heat of passion told him, " that he could prevail with the company 
if he would, and they might then obtain all that they desired." 

Nicholas Ferrar then being called to the upper end of the 
council table, addressed himself with all humility to the lords, 
and to lord Cranfield in particular, "beseeching them in the 
most earnest manner not to entertain so vain an imagination. 
That there were many members of the company much better 
qualified than he was to speak upon their affairs. Nevertheless, 
that he humbly entreated their lordships to consider seriously 
whether, if such a number of the Virginia company as made a 
court, or whether, if all those members who lived in or near 
London should meet and assemble together, whether even all 
these could either in law or equity give up the patent, without 
the previous consent of all the rest of the members, to the 
number of some thousands now dispersed all over England. And 
these too not persons of inferior rank, but persons of the first 
condition, of the nobility, and gentry, of the bishops, and clergy, 
of the chief citizens, and of the principal companies, and corpora- 
tions throughout the whole kingdom. Besides these, all the 
planters also in Virginia, who were all included in the grant, and 
who all upon the encouragement, and promised protection of the 
king, under the great seal of England, and the pledge of his royal 
word and honour, adventured their estates, and many of them 
even their lives in this the greatest and most honourable under- 
taking in which England had ever been engaged. He represented 
also the great good which in numberless sources of wealth and 
strength, would by means of this corporation, and through the 
encouragement of their care, by the blessing of God, shortly 
accrue to this nation. And he again and again most earnestly 
besought their lordships to take all these things into their most 

9 Cranfield.'] Lionel Cranfield, afterwards earl of Middlesex. It is worthy 
of remark that his daughter and heiress, Frances, married Richard, sixth earl 
if 1 >orset, the son of that Edward Sackville to whom, for safe custody, were 
committed (see p. 179) the copies of the books and papers of the Virginia 
Company which he (the lord treasurer Cranfield) laboured so sedulously to 


serious consideration; and no longer to urge them, not the 
twentieth part of the persons interested, to do an action which 
was in itself both unjust and unreasonable, and indeed impossible 
for them to do. For how could they pretend to give away and 
yield up the rights, and interests of other men, without the 
consent of the parties interested first obtained. And in the 
most solemn manner he adjured their lordships not to make them 
the instruments of doing so vile a thing, to which, if they con- 
sented, they should render themselves worthy of the severest 
punishment. Besides, he said, it is worthy your lordships 1 farther 
consideration, how far such a precedent may possibly operate, 
and how dangerous such an example may be, if only a twentieth 
part of any company should presume, or should be permitted to 
deliver up the liberties and privileges, the rights, and the pro- 
perty of the other nineteen parts, and that without so much as 
once calling them together to give their consent. This, he con- 
tinued, was what the company now assembled must refuse as a 
thing unjust, and not feasible for them to do." 

The lord treasurer upon his discoursing thus, being inflamed 
with violent passion, often interrupted him, and so did some 
others. But the marquis of Hamilton, the earl of Pembroke, 
and some other lords of the council said, " Nay, my good lords, 
forbear. Let him make an end. We have called him hither to 
know what he can say on the company's behalf. Let us there- 
fore not interrupt him ; it is but reasonable to hear him out. 
Mr. deputy, go on."" 

Mr. Ferrar, with the most respectful humility then said, 
" Most honourable lords, I was just on the point of concluding. 
I will add only this, that as for my own private interest, and the 
interest of many here present, and of many others who are absent, 
my lords, we all most humbly cast ourselves, and our estates at 
his majesty's royal feet : let him do with us and with them, if so 
he be determined, what seemeth best unto his good will and plea- 
sure. For as to what is really our own, and in us to give, we 
submit it all to his majesty's disposal ; and in all other things we 
shall endeavour to serve and please him in all that with a con- 
science unhurt we may : desiring only this, that with respect to 
the rights and property of others, we may be permitted to execute 
the trust reposed in us, with fidelity and honour, and to discharge 
religiously those duties, which, as they are of the first importance, 
ought to have the first influence upon the mind of man.'' 1 


Then the marquis of Hamilton stood up, and with a loud voice 
said, " Mr. deputy, in my opinion, my lords, hath spoken well, 
excellently well both for himself, and for the company. And 
what, my lords, can we now desire more of him ?" The earl of 
Pembroke seconded lord Hamilton, and said, " Surely, my lords, 
1 hope the king (if he shall hear all) will be satisfied with what 
we have done, but particularly with what we have now heard. 
Let us fairly report it to him, and then let his majesty do what 
he thinks most proper. We have sat a long time upon this busi- 
ness, and at length we may conjecture the result." 

Gondomar with his profligate instruments, the king, and the 
Spanish party at court, perceiving that Mr. Ferrar (having de- 
monstrated all their allegations to be false and groundless) had 
rendered all their violence ineffectual, now had recourse to a 
different mode of proceeding. They suborned, and procured per- 
sons to bring forward a crimination against him ; who came and 
exhibited in form a complaint to the council board. The sub- 
stance of the accusation was this, That the deputy, during the 
times of his appearing before the council, had drawn up and sent 
to the governor and plantation of Virginia certain dangerous 
instructions, and inflammatory letters of advice, directing them 
how they should conduct themselves in standing to their patent, 
and exhorting them that they should never give their consent to 
let it be delivered up. And therefore that if these letters and 
instructions were not countermanded by their lordships, some 
very ill consequence might ensue, and the king might thereby 
receive much dishonour. 

As soon as this pretended complaint was lodged in form, in- 
stantly, though it was then very late at night, some pursuivants, 
who were kept in readiness for that purpose, were dispatched in 
all haste to Mrs. Ferraris house to speak with the deputy, and to 
command him without any delay immediately to deliver up to 
them, all those books of the Virginia company wherein v 
registered the copies of all such letters and instructions as had 
been sent to the plantation from the council or company here. 

Mr. Ferrar told them that the secretary of the Virginia cmn- 
j , and not he, had the keeping of those books. They then 
rerpiin <1 him to give them a note to the secretary to deliver them. 
But he excused himself, saying, " Surely your commission will be 
a better authority for him to do so, than any note which I can 
send him. For my own part, if I had the company's evidences 


in my possession, entrusted to my custody, I certainly would not 
deliver them up, unless I had their leave, and express order so to 
do." When he said this they left him, and went to the secretary, 
and forced him to deliver up the books to them. 

The next day the deputy, and many lords and gentlemen con- 
cerned in the company, were summoned to attend at the council 
table. For the accusers of the company had given it out pub- 
licly, that now very strange things indeed would be discovered in 
these books and instructions, and brought forth to public view. 
On this account there was a very numerous attendance, and all 
the lords of the council also were particularly summoned to 

When the council was met, the deputy (as heretofore) was 
commanded to come to the upper end of the table. Then the 
accusers of the company desired of the lords that one of the 
clerks of the council might read such and such letters and instruc- 
tions written in such and such months. Some of which being- 
read, the lords of the council looked upon one another with 
evident marks of astonishment ; observing that there was nothing 
of that dangerous consequence in those papers, which the accusers 
had informed them they would discover ; but on the contrary 
much matter of high commendation. " Point out," said one 
lord, " where is the fault or error in these letters and instructions ; 
for my own part I must say that I cannot see any." 

The enemies of the company then prayed their lordships to 
hear them all read out ; and then they said it would soon appear 
where the faults lay. " Yea, yea," said the lord treasurer with 
vehemence, " read on, read on : we shall anon find them." So 
they still persisted to read. And in a word, so much patience 
had the lords, or rather so much pleasure, that many of them 
said they thought their time had been well spent. All these 
letters and instructions being in the end thus read out, and no- 
thing at all appearing which was any ways disadvantageous to the 
company, but on the contrary very much to their credit and 
honour : the marquis of Hamilton stood up, and said, " That 
there was one letter which he prayed might be read over again, 
on which he should desire to make a few observations." Which 
being accordingly done, "Well!" said he, " my lords, we have 
spent many hours here, in hearing all these letters and instruc- 
tions, and yet I could not help requesting to hear this one letter 
over again ; because I think that all your lordships must agree 


with me that it is absolutely a master-piece. And indeed they 
are all in high degree excellent. Truly, my lords, we have this 
day lost no time at all. For I do assure you that if our attend- 
ance here were for many days, I for my part would willingly n't 
them out to hear so pious, so wise, and indeed politic instructions 
as these are. They are papers as admirably well penned as any I 
ever heard. And, I believe, if the truth were known, your lord- 
ships are all of the same opinion.' 1 

The earl of Pembroke said, " There is not one thing in them 
all, which, as far as I can see, deserves in the least degree to be 
excepted against. On the contrary they all deserve the highest 
commendation : containing advices far more excellent than I 
could have expected to have met with in the letters of a trading 
company. For they abound with soundness of good matter, and 
profitable instruction with respect both to religion and policy ; and 
they possess uncommon elegance of language." Many other lords 
concurred in these commendations, and at length one, addressing 
himself to Mr. Ferrar, said, u Mr. deputy, I pray you tell us 
who penned these letters and instructions, we have some reason 
to think it was yourself." 

Mr. Ferrar, whose modesty and humility were not inferior to 
his other rare accomplishments, replied, " My lord, these arc the 
letters and instructions of the company, and the council of the 
company. For in all weighty affairs they order several commit- 
tees to make each a rough draught of what they judge proper to 
be done in these matters : which rough draughts are afterward all 
put together, and presented first to the council, and then to t lie- 
company to receive all proper alteration, as they shall please. 
And thus every thing is drawn up and concluded upon the advice 
of many." After due commendation of his modesty as well as 
his ability, it was replied to him, " Mr. deputy, that th > 
papers before us are the production of one pen, is very plainly 
discernible : they are jewels that all come out of one rich cabim-t. 
of which we have undoubted reason to believe that you aiv the 
true possessor." 

The lords under the influence of Gondomar were now abashed 
and silrnt ; only one of them said to the accusers of the company. 
What strange and unaccountable measures are these that you 
have taken ! to have called us together, and to make us sit and 
hear all these things uhich are entirely opposite to your O\MI 
information-, and which meet, as you find, with universal appro- 


bation." To which one man of a bold spirit replied, " We shall 
still in the end carry our point. These, my good lord, are not the 
letters and instructions which we meant. The company have 
others no doubt in private, which they secrete, and which if they 
could now be found, would quickly silence them. We have lately 
heard of things passing in their courts which would surprize you." 
On which one of the council rose and said, ;c My lords, such 
malevolence and injustice is unequalled : such proceedings are not 
to be endured. But unprincipled malice has a face too brazen to 
be ashamed of any thing." The lords then rose, and the adver- 
saries of the company were much confounded, having now with 
all honest and impartial men entirely lost all credit. 

The very night after this meeting, one of the clerks of the 
council came to Lord Southampton and told him that his deputy 
had that day gained a most complete victory, and had extorted 
the highest commendations even from the lords of the adverse 
party : and it was supposed that proposals would be made to him 
to engage in the king's immediate service. u But for all that, my 
lord," said he, " depend upon it, such the times are. your patent 
is irretrievably gone." 

Lord Southampton communicated this information to the lords 
and gentlemen interested in the company, saying, " You all 
well know that those things which our enemies thought would 
have been to their advantage, and our damage, have hitherto all 
turned out to our credit and to our honour : nevertheless, all will 
not help us. It is determined that our patent shall be taken 
away, and the company dissolved. The king, I find, has resolved 
to have the management of the plantation in his own hands, to 
direct, and govern as he sees best. A thing indeed worthy a 
king's care : but, alas ! alas ! this is all but a colourable shew. 
For you will find in the end that this worthy company will be 
broken, and come to nothing. We must ah 1 arm ourselves with 

Mr. Ferrar had now gained the highest reputation with all 
ranks of men for the uncommon abilities which he displayed on 
every occasion, and the esteem for his great virtues was un- 
bounded, but especially with those who were interested in the 
affairs of the Virginia company. At this time a citizen of the 
first class both for riches and reputation paid him a visit, and 
after the warmest expressions of the highest opinion of his extra- 
ordinary talents, and integrity, thus continued, "Mr. Ferrar. 


I have an only daughter, who, if paternal affection doth not too 
much influence my judgment, is both wise and comely : indeed it 
is confessed by all that she is very beautiful. I know her to have 
been virtuously educated, to be well accomplished, and to be of 
an amiable disposition. If you will be pleased to accept of her as 
your wife, I will immediately give you with her ten thousand 
pounds." Mr. Ferrar was much surprised, returned his sincere 
thanks, but said he was not worthy of so great a treasure. The 
citizen however persisted, said he was really in earnest to bring 
about the connection : that at present he only made his proposal 
with intent to give him an opportunity to consider of it. After 
a few days he came again, and asked Mr. Ferrar if he had 
advised with his friends concerning his proposal, saying, " They 
all know me well." Mr. Ferrar answered that he had not ; "for 
you I perceive, sir, are greatly mistaken in me, first in having too 
high an opinion of my abilities, and next with respect to my 
estate, which you perhaps may conceive to be what it is not. I 
think myself infinitely obliged to you for your good will towards 
me, and for honouring me so far as to think, what I cannot 
think of myself, that I am any way worthy of so inestimable a 
treasure as your daughter." " Mr. Ferrar," he replied, " do not 
talk thus to me : for I know you perfectly well ; and as for your 
estate, I give myself no manner of concern about it. What for- 
tune you have I demand not to know. Let it be what it will ; if 
you have nothing, I thank God that I have enough to make you 
and my daughter happy as to worldly matters. And as to my 
own part, I shall think myself the happiest man upon earth to 
have you my son-in-law, and my daughter must be equally happy 
to have so accomplished, and so virtuous a man for her 

By means of an intimate friend of the father, an interview was 
brought about at this friend's house between the young lady and 
Mr. Ferrar, where in a select company they passed several hours 
together. The father then took a convenient opportunity to a-k 
his daughter what she thought of Mr. Ferrar, to which >h<- 
answered, " Nothing but good." " Can you then like him for a 
hu>haml :" to which with equal ingenuousness and modesty she 
replied. "Sir, I shall with pleasure do in this, as well as in all 
other things, as you will please to have me : my duty and my 
inclination \\ill <j;o together." Matters being so far advanced, the 
tat her said to Mr. Ferrar, " Now, sir, you have seen my daugh- 


ter, I hope her person and deportment are such as to merit your 
approbation. As to your own estate, nothing is desired to be 
known. Be that as it may ; I have enough ; I like you, and my 
daughter submits herself to my choice. Now let me have your 
answer." Mr. Ferrer replied, " The young lady your daughter, 
sir, is in every respect not only unexceptionable, but highly to be 
admired : she is beautiful, and accomplished, and amiable to the 
greatest degree, and far superior to all that I can merit : indeed 
I do not, I cannot deserve this great happiness. I return you 
my sincerest thanks for your unequalled goodness to me ; and in 
the confidence of friendship I will now acquaint you with the 
private and fixed determination of my mind. If God will give 
me grace to keep a resolution long since formed, I have deter- 
mined to lead a single life ; and after having discharged, to the 
best of my ability, my duty to the company, and to my family, as 
to worldly concerns, I seriously purpose to devote myself to God, 
and to go into a religious retirement." Thus ended this affair, 
and the father ever after preserved the most affectionate friend- 
ship for Mr. Ferrar. 

After the unworthy part which the king, influenced by Gondo- 
mar, had taken in the persecution of the Virginia company, the 
deputy had now indeed a great encrease of trouble in managing 
their concerns. But in truth and justice to his friends it must 
be said, that lord Southampton, the earl of Dorset, the earl of 
Devon, lord Paget, Sir Edwyn Sandys and many others, gave 
him all the assistance in their power. But all to no purpose. 
For the king, notwithstanding his royal word and honour 1 

1 Word and honour."] " It must be admitted that Ferrar was not himself 
unscathed in this political contest : his conscience was wounded both as 
regarded his God and his king. In taking so active and conspicuous a part 
in this transaction, he had opposed the wishes of James, who was known to 
be unfriendly to the impeachment. He had yielded to the solicitations of the 
directors and proprietors of the company, and in doing so, it seems that some 
free speeches of his against the will of his prince, though exceedingly well 
meant, and tending to the ends of public justice, were, nevertheless, a source 
of long and deep regret to his loyal heart : so much so, that he was heard to 
say, stretching out his right hand, * I would I were assured of the pardon 
of that sin, though on the condition that this hand were cut off.' " Brief 
Memoirs of Nicholas Ferrar, M.A., chiefly collected from a narrative by the 
right rev. Dr. Turner, formerly lord bishop of Ely, and now edited, with addi- 
tions, by the Rev. T. M. Macdonough, vicar of Bovinadon, p. 73. 183/. I2mo. 

I am inclined to conjecture, that the indignant expressions of a political 


pledged to the contrary, notwithstanding the grant under the 
great seal of England, notwithstanding all that should bind 
the conscience, and direct the conduct of an honest man, was 
now determined with all his force to make the last assault, and 
give the death-blow to this as yet, prosperous, and thriving 

At this juncture a full testimonial came from the colony, 
proving the healthiness of the climate, and the fruitfulness of 
the country, against the slanderous informations of that captain 
Butler, who had been suborned by Gondomar and his agents to 
spread defamatory reports concerning a country of which he knew 
nothing, having only been there in his flight from justice, and 
having suddenly stolen away from thence to avoid being seized by 
authority for his scandalous proceedings. 

This testimonial being exhibited at the council board, the lords 
in Gondomar's interest became enraged, and resolved upon the 
last violence. They therefore now drew up a great number of 
charges utterly false and slanderous, against both the company 
and the colony, under the invention and direction of Gondomar, 
and the lord treasurer Cranfield. These accusations were given 
to the latter, and he now undertook either by consent to get, or 
by force to wring the patent out of the hands of the company. 

\Vith this view on the Thursday before Easter, 1623, a council 
was called, and the deputy and others were sent for to attend. 
Who being come, the lord treasurer presented those papers of 
accusation to the lords, saying that they contained a charge 
which the deputy and company must answer by the next Monday. 
For that a longer time would not, and should not be allowed 
them. Mr. Ferrar taking up the bulky bundle, said he thought 
it impossible to assemble the company, and answer so many, and 
such strange articles in so short a time as two days ; for Sunday 
was not a day for business, and therefore he humbly besought 
their lordships to allow him only a week, and he would desire no 
more. Upon this the lord treasurer cried out in great wrath, 
44 Not an hour longer than till Monday afternoon, and therefore 
take up the papers and be gone." 

These papers on examination were found to contain a huge 
parcel of absolute falsehoods, which the enemies of the company 

character, in the text, here and elsewhere, are to be attributed principally, not 
to Mr. John Ferrar, but to the modem compiler. Dr. Peckard. 


had invented, and drawn out to such an unreasonable length, that 
by the shortness of the time allowed (which was preconcerted 
with the lord treasurer) it was thought impossible that the agents 
for the company should give in any answer ; that then Gondo- 
rnar and his party would be triumphant, and able to boast that 
the Virginia company either could not, or durst not answer their 

Mr. Ferrar however dividing the charge into three parts, 
giving one to lord Cavendish, another to sir Edwyn Sandys, and 
taking the third to himself, and employing six clerks very ready 
with the pen to copy fair, continuing at the work without inter- 
ruption, night and day, allowing but two hours for sleep, and 
refreshment, did actually produce and lay before the council, a 
complete answer at the time appointed. The lords were assem- 
bled and making themselves merry with the expected embarrass- 
ment of the Virginia company. But in a very short time their 
merriment was converted into shame and confusion. A clerk was 
ordered to read the answer. The reading took up full six hours. 
When it was done, all was a considerable time deep silence and 
astonishment. The adversaries of the company were all per- 
plexed, and confounded, and in shame retired home. They had 
however sufficient presence of mind to secrete and convey away 
the answer they had required. It never appeared more, and the 
company never heard what became of it. 

The Spanish match being yet intended, and prosecuted, during 
this negociation the king was the absolute slave of Gondomar, to 
do without regard to honour or justice whatsoever he should ad- 
vise to be done. In consequence of this infatuation, the deputy, 
and thirty more of the directors, and principal persons of the 
Virginia company were now served with a writ of Quo Warranto, 
and commanded to show by what authority they pretended to 
exercise a power over the plantation, and to send a governor 
thither : and by this process the company now were obliged to 
go to law to defend their right. 

After many delays the cause came on to be pleaded. The 
great plea which the king's attorney general (Coventry) brought 
against them was, " That it was in general an unlimited, vast 
patent. In particular, the main inconvenience was, that by the 
words of the charter, the company had a power given them to 
carry away, and transport to Virginia, as many of the king's 
loving subjects as were desirous to go thither. And consequently, 


he said, by exercising this liberty, they may in the end carry 
away all the king's subjects into a foreign land ; and so leave his 
majesty a kingdom here indeed, but no subjects in it. And if 
this should be the case, what will then become of him, or of us ? 
This is certainly a strange clause, and the patent wherein it is 
contained ought to be forfeited." 

This weighty argument extorted a smile even from the judges, 
and the lawyers concerned to carry on the prosecution. Never- 
theless, it was admitted : for the determination was made, previous 
to entering upon the merits of the cause, what the decree should 
be. The attorney-general then proceeded, and said he had found 
a flaw in the company's answer, which if admitted, contained on 
the one hand too much, and on the other too little ; and there- 
fore, being such a nicety in law, he craved sentence upon it as 

Sentence was thereupon given, u That the patent, or charter 
of the company of English merchants trading to Virginia and 
pretending to exercise a power and authority over his majesty's 
good subjects there, should be thenceforth null and void." 

The king was at the bottom of this whole proceeding, which 
from beginning to end was a despotic violation of honour and of 

The great reputation of Mr. Ferrar being now spread over all 
parts of the country by the members of the late dissolved Virginia 
company, he was in 1624, elected a member of parliament. As 
this in a general consideration was highly proper on account of 
his extensive abilities, and known integrity ; so was there a 
peculiar propriety in his election at this time ; as there was an 
intention now to call to account before the house of parliament, 
those persons who had abused the king's ear, and had been 
guilty of those violent enormities in the false accusation of the 
managers of the Virginia company. For it was well known that 
Mr. Ferrar was not only more accurately acquainted with all the 
circumstances of that affair than any other person, but had also 
abilities and firmness sufficient to carry on the prosecution in a 
proper manner. 

The prince being now returned from Spain in great discontent. 
the Spanish party at court began in some degree to lose their 
influence. The parliament met. Mr. Ferrar was appointed one 
of several committees: sir Edwyn Sandys, and many other 
members of the lat- Virginia company were also in this j.arlia- 


ment. A charge was brought in against the lord treasurer, the 
earl of Middlesex, for taking bribes, and divers other exorbi- 
tancies committed in the execution of his office ; and also for his 
conduct in the Virginia affair, and his violence in taking away 
the patent, and dissolving the company. 

On this occasion the house appointed the lord William Caven- 
dish, sir Edwyn Sandys, and Nicholas Ferrar to draw up the 
charge against him and those others, who had been his instru- 
ments in that scandalous proceeding. The charge was soon 
drawn up, as Mr. Ferrar had all the necessary materials ready in 
his hands. The accusation was opened by him in a speech which 
lasted two hours, and which gained him universal admiration. 
For now he was fully and publicly seen in this exertion of his 
great abilities. The lord treasurer was deprived of his office, 
and punished by a large fine, and imprisonment. 

The iniquity of the Virginia business being fully proved, and 
laid before the public, by Mr. Ferrar, and the other managers, 
the house resolved to take the whole affair into their serious 
consideration, and endeavour to restore the company. But 
before they could make any progress they received a message 
from the king, " That he both already had, and would also here- 
after take the affair of the said late Virginia company into his 
own most serious consideration and care : and that by the next 
parliament they should all see he would make it one of his master 
pieces, as it well deserved to be." And thus was all farther pro- 
ceeding in that matter dishonourably stayed. For, as the event 
shewed, all these were nothing but fair words without any other 
intention than to stop the business. No care was taken of the 
plantation, but all was left to go to ruin. The violence and 
injustice, and other miseries consequent upon this falsehood, and 
repeated breach of honour in the king would supply a large 
story : but for divers reasons they are not proper to be here 

When Mr. Ferrar was first elected deputy governor of the 
company, and by his office became accurately acquainted with all 
their circumstances, he was soon convinced of the unbounded 
influence of Gondomar, of the king^s astonishing infatuation, and 
of his total disregard of truth and justice. Such a king as James 
was the properest instrument that could be found for such a 
workman as Gondomar ; and Mr. Ferrar plainly saw the malice of 
the one, and the folly of the other ; and like a wise man provided 

VOL. iv. N 


all in his power against future contingencies. He saw that 
Gondomar by means of the king would probably ruin the com- 
pany ; and that if they should carry this point, they most likely 
would cause all the court books, registers, instructions, and all 
other writings of the company to be taken away from their 
officers: that if opportunity should afterward be offered, they 
might never be able to make use of them either for their own 
justification, or in refutation of the false accusations of their 
enemies. He did not therefore depend upon the present pro- 
mising appearance of their affairs : he knew that malice was at 
work ; and he had frequently seen a temporary calm precede the 
most destructive storm. 

Being under apprehensions of this sort, about a year before 
the dissolution of the company, he procured an expert clerk 
fairly to copy out all the court books, and all other writings 
belonging to them, and caused them all to be carefully collated 
with the originals, and afterwards attested upon oath by the 
examiners to be true copies. The transcribing of which cost 
him out of his own pocket above 50, but this he thought one of 
the best services he could do the company. 

When the lords of the council therefore (as before related) 
seized the originals, Mr. Ferrar had all these attested copies, 
as yet unknown to any of the company, safe in his possession. 
But now when the lord treasurer had procured sentence in form 
against the company, and all their muniments had been taken 
from them, Mr. Ferrar informed sir Edwyn Sandys, and - 
other of his most intimate friends, what a treasure he had yet 
remaining in his hands ; and desired their opinion how ho might 
best dispose of them. On hearing this they were equally .sur- 
prised and overjoyed, and unanimously desired him to carry them 
to their late worthy governor the carl of Southampton. He did 
so, and farther told his lordship, that he now left them entirely 
to his lordship's care and disposal : that if hereafter there should 
be opportunity, he might make use of them in justification of 
his own, and the late company's most honourable and upright 

Tin- earl of Southampton cordially embracing Mr. Ferrar, said 
to him, u You still more and more engage me to love and honour 
you. I accept of this your present as of a rich treasure. For 
these are evidences that concern my honour. I shall value them 
therefore even more than the evidences that mix-em m\ lands ; 


inasmuch as my honour and reputation are to me of more estima- 
tion than wealth or life itself. They are also the testimonials of 
all our upright dealings in the business of the late company 
and the plantation. I cannot therefore express how highly I 
think myself obliged to you for this instance of your care and 

Soon after this interview, lord Southampton was advised not 
to keep these books in his own house, lest search should be made 
there for them ; but rather to place them in the hands, and 
entrust them to the care of some particular friend. Which ad- 
vice, as the times then stood, he thought proper to follow. He 
therefore delivered them into the custody of sir R. Killegrew, 
who kept them safely till he died. He left and recommended 
them to the care of sir Edward Sackville, late earl of Dorset, who 
died in May, 1652 : and it is hoped that this noble family still 
hath them in safe keeping 2 . 

Mr. Ferrar having seen the dissolution of the Virginia com- 
pany 3 , and no hope left of its revival, took his leave of the Virginia 
affairs by now paying the 300. left by his father for the purpose 
of erecting a college there, to the governor and company of the 
Somers Islands : binding them in articles to send for three Vir- 
ginia children, and bring them up in those islands : and when of 
fit age to put them out to some proper business : or else educate 
them in learning, and then send them back to the place of 
their birth, to convert their countrymen : and that when the 
first three were thus disposed of, three other should from 
time to time be sent for in succession for the same benevolent 

And thus ended Mr. Ferraris public life ; in which he displayed 

2 In safe keeping.'] It is very probable that they are still in safe keeping at 
Knowle, the ancestral residence of the Sackville family, now [1852] belonging 
to the countess of Amherst, the heiress of the dukes of Dorset. 

3 Dissolution of the Virginia company. ~\ Many facts relating to the history 
of this company will be found in the following work : viz., "A Short Collection 
of the most remarkable Passages from the Originall to the Dissolution of the 
Virginia Company. London, 1651." 4to. It is written by Arthur Woodnoth, 
and was given by him to his cousin, William Woodnoth, some years after 
whose death it was published, with a dedication by "A. P." to "the Com- 
pany of Adventurers for the Sommer, alias the Bermudas Islands." A. P. 
calls Arthur Woodnoth, "a true friend and servant to sir John Danvers 
(see p. 8) and the Parliament interest.'* The Woodnoths, it will be remem- 
bered, were relations of the Ferrars. See p. 124. 

N 2 


many proofs of great and extensive abilities, and of uncommon 
virtue, particularly of indefatigable diligence, industry, and ac- 
tivity, by which he gained universal admiration, and performed 
many important services, both to the Virginia company, and all 
others with whom he was concerned. 

The king having seized the patent and dissolved the Virginia 
company, and Mr. Ferrar having seen the attested copies of all 
the books and papers belonging to them delivered into safe cus- 
tody in the Dorset family, he was now disengaged from public 
cares, and determined to carry into execution the plan he had 
long set his heart upon, to bid farewel to the busy world, and 
spend the remainder of his days in religious retirement, and a 
strict course of devotion. 

Yet before he could complete his pious purpose it was necessary 
for him finally to settle some matters of great consequence, though 
of a private nature, which had been entrusted to his care. His 
established reputation for inflexible integrity had influenced seve- 
ral persons to prevail with him to undertake the executorship of 
their wills, and the settlement of their worldly affairs : and in 
some of these instances this trust concerned property of great 
value, and was involved in circumstances of great difficulty. 
Beside these occupations relative to the property of others, the 
situation of his brother required his immediate and close atten- 
tion. Mr. John Ferrar had been for three years deputy governor 
of the Virginia company, and in order to give himself up wholly 
to the discharge of that important trust, he had put into the 
hands of his partners in mercantile business seven thousand 
pounds, and assigned the management of those affairs over to 
them. He also advanced six thousand pounds more to them, for 
which he was engaged by a personal security. Whether it were 
by mismanagement or misfortune does not at present appear, but 
about this time the concerns of this partnership were fallen into 
the greatest confusion, and involved in the utmost embarrass- 
ment. Mr. N. Ferrar nevertheless by his great sagacity and 
indefatigable industry, in a shorter time than could be believed, 
extricated his brother from all his difficulties, and settled his 
affairs in the most honourable manner at the loss of about three 
thousand pounds. 

His next care was to provide a place fitted for the purpose, and 
corresponding with his iduas of religious retirement. His mother 
had indeed a very large house in London, in which had been holden 


the meetings of the Virginia company : she had also a consider- 
able estate, and a large house in the town of Hertford. But nei- 
ther of these places had his approbation, both being too much in 
view of the public. 

At length he was informed that the lordship of Little Gidding, 
in the county of Huntingdon, was to be sold. He immediately 
went thither to examine the place and premises, which he found, 
with respect to privacy of situation, exactly suited to his wishes. 
It was a parish that had been for some time depopulated. Nothing 
was left but one extremely large mansion-house, going hastily to 
decay, and a small church within thirty or forty paces of the 
house, and at that time converted into a barn. Upon his return 
to London he purchased the whole lordship, and this purchase 
was made in the year 1624. 

But now the plague having been some time in London, was in 
the year 1 625 spread over most parts of the town, and was disco- 
vered to be at the very next door to Mrs. Ferraris house. Mr. 
N. Ferrar was therefore very urgent that she and the family 
would immediately depart into the country ; but while she lin- 
gered, being unwilling to leave him behind, he procured a coach, 
and at length prevailed : and that very night, Whitsun-eve, she 
with her son John, and the rest of the family, went to her house 
at Hertford, and the following week to her daughter Collet's, at 
Bourne-bridge, in Cambridgeshire. 

Mr. N. Ferrar would have attended his mother, but that he 
had not completely settled his brother's affairs. During this 
business, Mr. J. Ferrar, leaving his mother at Bourne, went to 
Gidding to make some necessary preparation there for the recep- 
tion of the family, who were now become very unhappy at the 
stay of Mr. N. Ferrar in London, as they had been informed that 
the disorder was fatal every week to more than four thousand 
persons. As soon as he had finished the business which required 
his stay, he, with great joy and gratitude to God, repaired to 
Gidding ; from whence he wrote to his mother, entreating her 
not to come to him in less than a month, that it might appear 
whether he had brought away any infection with him. But her 
impatience to see him was so great, that three days after she rode 
thither, and their meeting was such as might, at that time, be 
expected between a pious parent and a dutiful son, to the highest 
degree mutually affectionate ; in its circumstances indeed very 
different from the modern meetings of parent and son : for he, 


though twenty-seven years of age, who had been engaged in many 
public concerns of great importance, had been a distinguished 
member of parliament, and had conducted with effect the prose- 
cution of the prime minister of the day, at first approaching his 
mother, knelt upon the ground to ask and receive her blessing. 
He then besought her to go into the house, rude as it was, and 
repose herself. This she refused till she had given thanks to God 
in the church, which was very near at hand. But she was exceed- 
ingly grieved to find it filled with hay and instruments of hus- 
bandry. Immediately all the workmen, many in number, em- 
ployed in the repair of the house, were set to cleanse and repair 
the church : for she said she would not suffer her eyes to sleep 
nor her eyelids to slumber till she had purified the temple of the 
Lord. In about a month's time, finding that all danger of 
infection was over, she sent for her beloved daughter Collet, and 
her husband, and all their numerous family, to come and live with 
her at Oidding. 

Mrs. Ferrar was now seventy-three years of age, yet was she 
possessed of so much vigour, and had so much of the appearance 
as well as the reality of health, that all who saw her concluded 
her to be not more than forty. Her family now consisted of near 
forty persons ; and it being a season of deep humiliation on 
account of the mortality then become general all over the king- 
dom, it was determined to address themselves to God, as often as 
they conveniently could, according to the doctrine and discipline 
by law established in the church of England. To this end, Mr. 
N. Ferrar obtained permission of his old acquaintance bishop 
Williams, to have the service performed in the church, which 
was now put into decent repair ; and he procured the minister of 
the adjoining parish to read the morning service every day at eight 
o'clock, the litany at ten, and the evening service at four. On 
the Sunday mornings the whole family went to Steeple (iiddin^, 
and in the afternoon the minister of that parish and his parish- 
ioners came to the church newly repaired by Mrs. Ferrar. 

At Easter, 1626, the plague being then ceased, Mr. N. Ferrar 
and his mother, and some others of the family, went to London, 
tn dispose of their great house there, to settle their remaining 
all'.iirs, and to take a final leave of all their friends. When they 
had been some little time in London, he resolved, in order the 
better to carry on hi.s religious plan by his own personal as 
anre, to become a deacon. This resolution he commnnieated to 


none but his honoured tutor, Dr. Lindsel, who highly applauded 
it, and introduced him to Dr. Laud, then bishop of St. David's, 
by whom he was ordained deacon on the Trinity Sunday 

On his return home he addressed himself to his mother, and 
shewed her in a writing signed, a vow which he had made with 
great solemnity ; That since God had so often heard his most 
humble petitions, and delivered him out of many dangers ; and 
in many desperate calamities had extended his mercy to him ; he 
would therefore now give himself up continually to serve God to 
the utmost of his power, in the office of a deacon : into which 
office he had that very morning been regularly ordained. That 
he had long ago seen enough of the manners and of the vanities 
of the world ; and that he did hold them all in so low esteem, 
that he was resolved to spend the remainder of his life in mortifi- 
cations, in devotion, and charity, and in a constant preparation 
for death. 

There is reason to believe that even in his infancy, and before 
he set out upon his travels, and after his great escape upon the 
Alps, he did privately and solemnly devote himself to God ; and 
that after his unexpected recovery from his dangerous illness both 
at Padua and Marseilles he repeated these pious resolutions, 
adding also a vow of perpetual celibacy. This, if true, may 
account for his extraordinary continence (though in the full 
prime and vigour of life) in refusing the offer of a young lady of 
incomparable beauty and rare accomplishments, of the most 
amiable disposition, and of an immense fortune ; who had also 
ingenuously confessed that he had won her highest approbation 
and esteem. Instances of such firmness of mind and self-denial 
seldom occur. 

The news of Mr. Ferrar being ordained was soon spread abroad 
both in the city and at court, as in both he was universally known 
and very highly esteemed. His constant friends the marquis of 
Hamilton, lord Pembroke, and Sir Edwin Sandys took this oppor- 
tunity of saying to him, That though he had formerly refused all 
temporal emoluments, yet now he had taken orders they must 
suppose that he had not any objection to spiritual preferment, and 
immediately made him an offer of some ecclesiastical benefices of 
great value. These he refused with steadiness and humility, 
saying that he did not think himself worthy. He added also, 
that his fixed determination was to rise no higher in the church 


than the place and office which he now possessed, and which he 
had undertaken only with the view to be legally authorised to 
give spiritual assistance, according to his abilities, to his family 
or others, with whom he might be concerned. That as to tem- 
poral affairs, he had now parted with all his worldly estate, and 
divided it amongst his family. That he earnestly besought his 
honoured friends to accept his sincere thanks for their good opi- 
nion of him, for whose prosperity, both in this world and a better, 
he would never cease to pray. And now having finished all busi- 
ness in London, and taken a solemn and final leave of all their 
friends, he and his mother returned to Gidding. 

It now comes in course to speak of the established economy 
both of the house and the church ; and it is hoped that the reader 
will here excuse a circumstantial relation : because on these very 
circumstances, misapprehended, and misrepresented, were founded 
all the calumnies and persecution which the family afterward 

Many workmen having been employed near two years, both 
the house and church were in tolerable repair, yet with respect 
to the church Mrs. Ferrar was not well satisfied. She therefore 
new floored and wainscotted it throughout. She provided also 
two new suits of furniture for the reading-desk, pulpit, and com- 
munion-table : one for the week days, and the other for Sundays 
and other festivals. The furniture for week days was of green 
cloth, with suitable cushions and carpets. That for festivals was 
of rich blue cloth, with cushions of the same, decorated with lace, 
and fringe of silver. The pulpit was fixed on the north, and the 
reading-desk over against it, on the south side of the church, and 
both on the same level*: it being thought improper that a higher 
place should be appointed for preaching than that which was 
allotted for prayer. A new font was also provided, the leg, laver, 
and cover all of brass, handsomely and expensively wrought and 
carved ; with a large brass lectern, or pillar and eagle of brass 
for the Bible. The font was placed by the pulpit, and the lectern 
by the reading-desk. 

The half-pace, or elevated floor, on which the communion-tal>le 
stood at the end of the chancel, with the stalls on each side, was 
covered with blue taffety, and cushions of the finest tapestry and 
blue silk. The space behind the communion-table, under the east 

4 On the same level.] See Walton's Life of Herbert, in this volume, p. 20. 


window, was elegantly wainscotted, and adorned with the Ten 
Commandments, the Lord's Prayer, and the Apostles' Creed, 
engraved on four beautiful tablets of brass, gilt. 

The communion-table itself was furnished with a silver patin, 
a silver chalice, and silver candlesticks, with large wax candles in 
them. Many other candles of the same sort were set up in every 
part of the church, and on all the pillars of the stalls. And these 
were not for the purposes of superstition, but for real use ; which 
for great part of the year the fixed hours for prayer made neces- 
sary both for morning and evening service. Mrs. Ferrar also 
taking great delight in church music, built a gallery at the 
bottom of the church for the organ. Thus was the church 
decently furnished, and ever after kept elegantly neat and clean. 

All matters preparatory to order and discipline being arranged 
and settled, about the year 1631, Dr. Williams, the bishop of 
Lincoln, came privately to Gidding, to pay a visit to his old friend 
Mr. N. Ferrar, with whom he had contracted a friendship at the 
Virginia board, and for whom he ever held the highest and most 
affectionate esteem. 

By this visit he had an opportunity to view the church, and 
the house, and to examine into their way of serving God, which 
had been much spoken against ; to know also the soundness of 
the doctrine they maintained : to read the rules which Mr. N. 
Ferrar had drawn up for watching, fasting, and praying, for 
singing psalms and hymns, for their exercises in readings, and 
repetitions ; for their distribution of alms, their care of the sick, 
and wounded ; and all other regularities of their institution. 
All which the bishop highly approved, and bade them in God's 
name to proceed. 

In 1633 Mrs. Ferrar came to a resolution 5 to restore the 

3 Came to a resolution.'] " Their heavenly-mindedness was best discovered 
to their diocesan, when two sons of Mrs. Ferrar, the mother and matron of 
the houshold, treated with the bishop, to endow the church with the tithes, 
which had been impropriated : this was in September 1633, as appears by a 
smack of that which fell from the pen of the donor, as followeth : 

" * Right reverend father in God, 

" ' The expectation of opportunities having some years wheeled 
me off from the performance of this business, I now think it necessary to 
break through all impediments, and humbly to present to your lordship the 
desires and the intentions of my heart : beseeching you on God's behalf to 


glebe lands and tithes to the church, which some fourscore years 
before had been taken away, and in lieu thereof only 20/. a year 
paid to tin* minister. She had from the first been so resolved, 
but had been put off by unexpected delays. She found great 
difficulty in making out the glebe lands : but at length by the 
industry of Mr. N. Ferrar, she overcame it. She then sent her 
sons John and Nicholas with a letter to the bishop informing him 
of her determination, and desiring it might be confirmed by his 

take them into your fatherly consideration, and to give a speedy accomplish- 
ment to them, by the direction of your wisdom, and the assistance of your 

"The rest is too much to be rehearsed, save a little of her prayer to God in 
the end of the papers. 

" ' Be graciously pleased, Lord, now to accept from thy handmaid the resti- 
tution of that, which hath been unduly heretofore taken from thy ministers. 
And as an earnest and pledge of the total resignation of herself and hers to 
thy service, vouchsafe to receive to the use of thy church this small portion 
of that large estate, which thou hast bestowed on her the unworthiest of thy 
servants. Lord, redeem thy right, whereof thou hast been too long disseized 
by the world both in the possessions and in the person of thy hand-maid. 
And let this outward seizure of earth be accompanied with an inward sur- 
prizal of the heart and spirit, into thine own hands : so that the restorer, as 
well as that which is restored, may become, and be con6rmed thine inhe- 

"The bishop prayed to God that many such customers might come to 
him : so commended her free-will offering to God, and confirmed it. 

" To make them some amends for their liberality to the church, he devised 
now to give them reputation against all detraction. Therefore in the spring 
that came after, he gave them warning on what Sunday he would preach in 
their church, whither an extreme press of people resorted from all the towns 
that heard of it. In his sermon he inserted most what it was to die unto the 
world: that the righteous should scarce be saved: that our right eye, and 
our right hand, and all our fleshly contentments, must be cut off, that we 
may enter into life. All tended to approve the dutiful and severe life of the 
Femurs, and of the church that was in their house. After sermon the bishop 
took their invitation to dine with them. But they were so strict to keep that 
day holy, that they left not a servant at home to provide for the table. Yet 
it was handsomely furnished with that which was boiled and baked, that 
required no attendance, to stay any one from church to look to it. By this 
visit the bishop had the means to see their way of serving God; to know the 
soundness of doctrine which they maintained : to read their rules which they 
had drawn up for fasts, and vigils, and large distribution of alms : in which 
he bad*- them proceed in the name of God, and gave them his blessings at 
his departing." Hacket's Life of Archhishop Williams, part ii. p. 51. See 
also Kennett On Impropriations and Augmentation of Vicarages, p. 235 7. 


authority. This authority from the bishop was farther strength- 
ened by a decree in chancery under lord Coventry. 

In the spring of 1 634, the bishop to make some acknowledge- 
ment of this generosity, gave notice, that he would again pay a 
visit to the family and give them a sermon. And it being known 
that he was a lover of church music, application was made to 
Dr. Towers, dean of Peterborough, who sent his whole choir to 
Gidding on the occasion. Divine service was performed through- 
out in the cathedral manner with great solemnity. The bishop 
preached a sermon adapted to the occasion, and in the afternoon 
gave confirmation to all of the neighbourhood who desired it. 

Every thing relative to the church being now compleatly 
settled, Mr. Ferrar next turned his attention to the disposition 
of the mansion. The house being very large, and containing 
many apartments, he allotted one great room for their family 
devotions, which he called the Oratory, and adjoining to this, 
two other convenient rooms, one a night oratory for the men, 
the other a night oratory for the women: he also set out a 
separate chamber and closet for each of his nephews and nieces ; 
three more he reserved for the schoolmasters ; and his own 
lodgings were so contrived that he could conveniently see that 
every thing was conducted with decency and order. Without 
doors he laid out the gardens in a beautiful manner, and formed 
them in many fair walks. 

Another circumstance that engaged his attention was, that the 
parish had for many years been turned into pasture grounds ; that 
as there was a very large dovecote, and a great number of pigeons 
upon these premises, these pigeons must consequently feed upon 
his neighbours' corn ; and this he thought injustice. He there- 
fore converted this building into a school-house, which being 
larger than was wanted for the young people of the family, per- 
mission was given to as many of the neighbouring towns as 
desired it, to send their children thither, where they were in- 
structed without expence, in reading, writing, arithmetic, and the 
principles of the Christian religion. 

For this and other purposes, he provided three masters to be 
constantly resident in the house with him. The first was to 
teach English to strangers, and English and Latin to the chil- 
dren of the family : the second, good writing in all its hands, 
and arithmetic in all its branches : the third, to instruct them in 
the theory and practice of music, in singing, and performing upon 


the organ, viol, and lute. On the last instrument his sister Collet 
was a distinguished performer. 

For all these things the children had their stated times and 
hours. So that though they were always in action, and always 
learning something, yet the great variety of things they were 
taught prevented all weariness, and made every thing be received 
with pleasure. And he was used to say that he who could attain 
to the well-timing things, had gained an important point, and 
found the surest way to accomplish great designs with ease. 

On Thursdays, and Saturdays in the afternoons, the youths were 
permitted to recreate themselves with bows and arrows, with 
running, leaping, and vaulting, and what other manly exercises 
they themselves liked best. With respect to the younger part of 
the females, the general mode of education was similar to that of 
the boys except where the difference of sex made a different em- 
ployment or recreation proper. When the powers of reason and 
judgment became in some degree matured, they were all at proper 
times taken under the immediate instruction of Mr. Ferrar him- 
self, who bestowed several hours every day in that important 
employment. According to the capacity of each he gave tin -in 
passages of Scripture to get by heart, and particularly the whole 
book of psalms. He selected proper portions, of which he gave 
a clear explanation, and a judicious comment. But above all 
things he was anxiously attentive to daily catechetical lectures, 
according to the doctrine of the Church of England. And in 
order to make his pious labours extensively beneficial, he invited 
the children of all the surrounding parishes, to get the book of 
psalms by heart. To encourage them to this performance, i-adi 
was presented with a psalter : all were to repair to Gidding every 
Sunday morning, and each was to repeat his psalm, till they could 
all repeat the whole book. These psalm-children, as they WITC 
called, more than a hundred in number, received every Sunday, 
according to the proficiency of each, a small pecuniary reward and 
a dinner, which was conducted with great regularity. For, win -n 
they returned from church, long trestles were placed in the middle 
of the great hall, round which the children stood in great order. 
Mrs. Ferrar, and her family then came in to see them scrv-d. 
The servants brought in baked puddings and nu-at : whk-h was 
tin only repast provided on Sundays for the whole family, that all 
might have an opportunity of attending divine service at church, 
then set on tin- tir>t di>h herself, to give an example of 


humility. Grace was said, and then the bell rang for the family, 
who thereupon repaired to the great dining-room, and stood in order 
round the table. Whilst the dinner was serving, they sang a 
hymn to the organ : then grace was said by the minister of the 
parish, and they sat down. During dinner one of the younger 
people, whose turn it was, read a chapter in the Bible, and when 
that was finished, another recited some chosen story out of the 
book of martyrs, or Mr. Ferrar's short histories. When the 
dinner was finished throughout the family, at two o'clock the bell 
summoned them to church to evening service, whither they went 
in a regular form of procession, Mr. N. Ferrar sometimes leading 
his mother, sometimes going last in the train : and having all 
returned from church in the same form, thus ended the public 
employment of every Sunday. 

Immediately after church the family all went into the oratory, 
where select portions of the psalms were repeated, and then all 
were at liberty till five o'clock : at which hour in summer, and 
six in the winter, the bell called them to supper : where all the 
ceremonial was repeated exactly the same as at dinner. After 
supper they were again at liberty till eight, when the bell sum- 
moned them all into the oratory, where they sang a hymn to the 
organ, and went to prayers ; when the children asked blessing 7 

7 Asked blessing. ,] Compare above, p. 182. This beautiful and pious cus- 
tom, no small grace, ornament, and blessing, in the families of our ancestors 
(compare vol. ii. pp. 72, 73, of this collection), appears to have received its first 
shock, about this period, and during the Cromwellian usurpation ; an interval 
in which, as it might easily be shown, a considerable portion of the best of 
our old English manners, and many practices, which were themselves part of, 
and instruments of piety, were exploded, and lost, by being branded under 
the odious name of popery. " The having of god-fathers at baptism, church- 
ing of women, prayers at the burial of the dead, children asking their parents' 
blessing, &c., which whilom were held innocent were now by very many thrown 
aside, as rags of popery. Nay, are not some gone so far already, as to cast 
into the same heap, not only the ancient hymn Gloria Patri (for the repeating 
whereof alone some have been deprived of all their livelihoods), and the 
Apostles' Creed: but even the use of the Lord's Prayer itself?" Preface to 
Sanderson's Sermons, dated July 13, 1657, p. 73, edit. 1689. Yet, it is con- 
solatory to find, that there were some happy families, of the most pious and 
excellent of the non-conformists, who were not deterred by that malignant, 
senseless, and fatal plea, from persevering in this devotion and homage to the 
Father of Spirits, so congenial to his temper and example, who commanded 
the young children to be brought unto him, who blamed those that would 
have kept them from him, who embraced them in his arms, laid his hands 
upon them and blessed them. " Immediately after the prayer was ended " 


of their parents, and then all the family retired to their re- 
spective apartments ; and thus ended the private observation of 
the sabbath. 

On the first Sunday of every month they always had a commu- 
nion, which was administered by the clergyman of the adjoining 
parish ; Mr. N. Ferrar assisting as deacon. All the servants who 
then received the communion, when dinner was brought up, re- 
mained in the room, and on that day dined at the same table with 
Mrs. Ferrar, and the rest of the family. 

That I may not be thought to conceal any thing which brought 
censure upon them, and led to their persecution, I will here insert 
the particular mode of their processions, and other circumstances 
which were condemned by some as being superstitious. I shall 
not pass any judgment myself on these ceremonials, relating mere 
matter of fact, and observing only that where there was error, it 
was error on the side of virtue and goodness. 

When their early devotions in the oratory were finished they 
proceeded to church in the following order : 

First, the three school-masters, in black gowns and Monmouth 

Then, Mrs. Ferraris grandsons, clad in the same manner, two 
and two. 

Then her son Mr. J. Ferrar, and her son-in-law Mr. Collet, in 
the same dress. 

Then, Mr. N. Ferrar, in surplice, hood, and square cap, some- 
times leading his mother. 

Then, Mrs. Collet, and all her daughters, two and two. 

Then, all the servants, two and two. The dress of all \\a-> 

Then, on Sundays, all the psalm-children, two and two. 

As they came into the church, every person made a low obei- 
sance, and all took their appointed places. The masters, and 
gentlemen in the chancel : the youths knelt on the tipper step of 
the half pace : Mrs. Ferrar, her daughters, and all her grand- 
fas we are told by the celebrated Matthew Henry, in the life of his father, 
Mr. Philip Henry), "his children together, with bended knee, asked blessings 
of him and their mother; that is, desired of them to pray to God to bless 
them ; which blessing was given with great solemnity and affection ; and if 
any of them were absent they were remembered ; The Lord blfss you and 
your brother ; or you and your sister that is absent.' 1 P. 56, edit. 1699. Com- 
pare Christian Institutes, vol. iv. p. 561, 2 ; Sanderson, ami n. 


daughters in a fair island-seat. Mr. N. Ferrar at coming in 
made a low obeisance ; a few paces farther, a lower ; and at the 
half-pace, a lower still : then went into the reading-desk, and 
read matins according to the book of common prayer. This ser- 
vice over, they returned in the same order, and with the same 
solemnity. This ceremonial was regularly observed every Sunday, 
and that on every common day was nearly the same. They rose 
at four ; at five went to the oratory to prayers ; at six, said the 
psalms of the hour, (for every hour had its appointed psalms,) 
with some portion of the gospel, till Mr. Ferrar had finished his 
Concordance, when a chapter of that work was substituted in 
place of the portion of the gospel. Then they sang a short hymn, 
repeated some passages of Scripture, and at half past six went to 
church to matins. At seven said the psalms of the hour, sang 
the short hymn, and went to breakfast. Then the young people 
repaired to their respective places of instruction. At ten, to 
church to the litany. At eleven to dinner. At which seasons 
were regular readings in rotation, from the Scripture, from the 
book of martyrs, and from short histories drawn up by Mr. Ferrar, 
and adapted to the purpose of moral instruction. Recreation was 
permitted till one ; instruction was continued till three. Church 
at four, for evensong ; supper at five, or sometimes six. Diver- 
sions till eight. Then prayers in the oratory : and afterwards all 
retired to their respective apartments. To preserve regularity in 
point of time, Mr. Ferrar invented dials in painted glass in every 
room ; he had also sundials, elegantly painted with proper mottos, 
on every side of the church : and he provided an excellent clock 
to a sonorous bell. 

The short histories alluded to above were probably composed 
on the occasion, and to suit some present purpose. Those which 
are still remaining in my possession are put together without any 
regularity of series, or any dependance of one upon another, and 
are as in the catalogue annexed 8 . 


[The life of Monica. Of Dr. Whitaker. 

Of Abraham. Of Scaliger. 

Of Elizer. Of Mr. Perkins. 

Of Lady Paula. Of Dr. Metcalf. 

Of Hyldegardis. Of Sir Fran. Drake. 

Of Paracelsus. Of Mr. Cambden. 


These lives, characters, and moral essays would, I think, fill 

Of Haman. Of Gus. Adolphus. 

Of Wolsey. Of the Black Prince. 

Of Brandon D. of Suffolk. Of Joan Q. of Naples. 

The life of Ld. Burleigh. Of the Witch of Endor. 

Of Sir J. Markham. Of Joan of Arc. 

Of St. Augustin. Of Caesar Borgia. 

Of Bp. Ridley. Of Jehu. 

Of L. Jane Grey. Of Andronicus Comnenus. 

Of Q. Elizabeth. Of the Duke of Alva. 


The good Wife. The good Sea-Captain. 

The good Husband. The good Herald. 

The good Parent. The true Gentleman. 

The good Child. The Favourite. 

The good Master. The wise Statesman. 

The good Servant. The good Judge. 

The good Widow. The good Bishop. 

The constant Virgin. The true Nobleman. 

The elder Brother. The Court Lady. 

The younger Brother. The Embassadour. 

The good Advocate. The good General. 

The good Physician. The Heir Apparent to the Crown. 

The controversial Divines. The King. 

The true Church antiquary. The Harlot. 

The general Artist. The Witch. 

The faithful Minister. The Atheist. 

The good Parishioner. The Hypocrite. 

The good Patron. The Heretic. 

The good Landlord. The rigid Donatist. 

The good Ma r of a College. The Liar. 

The good Schoolmaster. The common Barreter. 

The good Merchant. The degenerous Gentleman. 

The good Yeoman. The Pazzians Conspiracy *. 

The Handicrafts Man. The Tyrant. 

The good Soldier. 



1. Of Hospitality. 3. Of Self-praising. 

2. Of Jesting. ' 4. Of Travelling. 

1 Paztiant Conspiracy.] The conspiracy, at the head of which were pope 
I IV, and his nephew, Girolamo Riario, which was formed by Francesco 
de' Pazzi, to assassinate Lorenzo and Giuliano de' Medici, in April, 14/8. 


two or three volumes in octavo 2 . They are but a small part of 
the MS. works which Mr. Ferrar left behind him, which, as 
appears from some papers still existing, amounted to five volumes 
in folio. He was of opinion that instruction merely by precept 
might sometimes become dry and wearisome, and therefore was 
desirous to enliven his lectures by something that might give 
pleasure to the fancy at the same time that it conveyed wisdom 
to the heart. But he had great objection to plays, novels, and 
romances, and to poems, that were then, and indeed have ever 
since been in great esteem- He thought that in many instances 
they did not tend to the important point which he had in view. 
But he reflected also that our Saviour himself frequently delivered 
his discourses in parables ; and therefore that fable, to a certain 
degree, might be admitted in moral instruction. With this view 
he composed those stories, and essays, which were intended to 
enliven their readings, and conversations. Beside these, he drew 
up regular discourses upon all the fasts and feasts of the church, 
and these also in their order made part of the readings. Every 
one of the young people, from the eldest to the youngest, male 
and female, was exercised every day in these public readings, and 
repetitions : by which the memory was wonderfully strengthened, 
and they all attained great excellence in speaking with propriety 
and grace. 

But now four of Mr. Collet's eldest daughters being grown up 
to woman's estate, to perfect them in the practice of good house- 


5. Of Company. 16. Of Plantations. 

6. Of Apparel. 17. Of Contentment. 

7. Of Building. 18. Of Books. 

8. Of Anger. 19. Of Time-serving. 

9. Of expecting Preferment. 20. Of Moderation. 

10. Of Memory. 21. Of Gravity. 

11. Of Fancy. 22. Of Marriage. 

12. Of Natural Fools. 23. Of Fame. 

13. Of Recreations. 24. Of the antiquity of Churches, and 

14. Of Tombs. the necessity of them. 

15. Of Deformities. 25. Of Ministers Maintenance.] 

3 In octavo."] The probability however is, that the greater part, if not the 
whole of this catalogue, were not original, but extracts : as Dr. Peckard 
would have been able to satisfy himself by consulting Fuller's Holy State, 
fol., where many of the titles of the chapters exactly correspond with those 
in this catalogue. 

VOL. iv. o 


wifery, Mr. Ferrar appointed them in rotation to take the whole 
charge of the domestic oeconomy. Each had this care for a 
month, when her accounts were regularly passed, allowed, and 
delivered over to the next in succession. There was also the 
same care and regularity required with respect to the surgeon's 
chest ; and the due provision of medicines and all things neces- 
sary for those who were sick, or hurt by any misfortune. A con- 
venient apartment was provided for those of the family who 
chanced to be indisposed, called the infirmary, where they might 
be attended, and properly taken care of, without disturbance 
from any part of the numerous family. A large room was nl-o 
set apart for the reception of the medicines, and of those who 
were brought in sick, or hurt, and wanted immediate assistance. 
The young ladies were required to dress the wounds of those who 
were hurt, in order to give them readiness and skill in this 
employment, and to habituate them to the virtues of humility 
and tenderness of heart 3 . The office relative to pharmacy, the 
weekly inspection, the prescription, and administration of medi- 
cines, Mr. Ferrar reserved to himself, being an excellent physi- 
cian : as he had for many years attentively studied the theory, 
and practice of medicine, both when physic fellow at Clare-hall, 
and under the celebrated professors at Padua. In this way \\ a> 
a considerable part of their income disposed of, and thus did Mr. 
Ferrar form his nieces to be wise and useful, virtuous, and valu- 
able women. 

3 Tenderness of heart.'] In the Reliques of ancient English poetry we read 
" As to what will be observed in this ballad (Sir Cauline) of the art of healing 
being practised by a young princess, it is no more than what is usual in all 
the old romances, and was conformable to real manners ; it being a practice 
derived from the earliest times among all the Gothic and Celtic nations, for 
women even of the highest rank to exercise the art of surgery. In the 
northern chronicles we always find the young damsels stanching the wounds 
of their lovers, and the wives those of their husbands. And even so late as 
the time of queen Elizabeth it is mentioned, among the accomplishments of 
the ladies of her court, that the eldest of them are skilfull in surgery."- 
Rel. of Ant. Eng. Poetry. Introd. to Sir Cauline, p. 39. 

" I could set down the ways and means whereby our ancient ladies of the 
court do shun and avoid idleness, while the youngest sort applie to their 
lutes, citharnes, prick-song, and all kinds of music : how many of the eldest 
sort also are skilfull in surgery, and distillation of waters, &c. I might 
easily declare, but I pass over such manner of dealing, lest I should seem to 
glavcr, and currie favour with some of them." Harrison's Descrip. of Eny. 
before linllingshtad's Chron. p. 196, col. ii. 1. Jo. 


In order to give some variety to this system of education, he 
formed the family into a sort of collegiate institution, of which 
one was considered as the founder, another guardian, a third as 
moderator, and himself as visitor of this little academy. The 
seven virgin daughters formed the junior part of this society, were 
called The Sisters 4 , and assumed the names of, 1st. The Chief. 
2d. The Patient. 3d. The Chearful. 4th. The Affectionate. 
5th. The Submiss. 6th. The Obedient. 7th. The Moderate. 
These all had their respective characters to sustain, and exercises 
to perform suited to those characters. 

For the Christmas season of the year 1631, he composed twelve 
excellent discourses, five suited to the festivals within the twelve 
days, and seven to the assumed name and character of the sis- 
ters. These were enlivened by hymns and odes composed by Mr. 
Ferrar, and set to music by the music master of the family, who 
accompanied the voices with the viol, or the lute. That exercise 
which was to be performed by the Patient, is alone to be excepted. 
There was not any poetry, or music at the opening of this as 
of all the rest : the discourse itself was of a very serious turn, it 
was much longer than any other, and had not any historical 
anecdote, or fable interwoven into the body of it. The con- 
trivance here was to exercise that virtue which it was intended to 

Upon the whole, these and many other dialogues, conversa- 
tions, histories, fables, and essays, which Nicholas Ferrar penned 
for the immediate use of his family, and left behind him in many 
large volumes, if ever the world should be so happy as to see 
them, will best show what he was, a man every way so complete, 
that few ages have brought forth his equal ; whether we con- 
sider his vast memory, his deep judgment, his rare contrivance, 
or the elegance of stile in the matter, and manner of his com- 

Amongst other articles of instruction and amusement Mr. 
Ferrar entertained an ingenious bookbinder who taught the 
family, females as well as males, the whole art and skill of book- 
binding, gilding, lettering, and what they called pasting-printing, 
by the use of the rolling-press. By this assistance he composed 

4 The Sisters."] A paper of " Remains of the Maiden- Sisters' Exercises at 
Little-Gidding " is given by Thos. Hearne in his Caii Vindicia, vol. ii. 
pp. 713 94. It consists principally of Discourses and Histories suitable to 
the seasons of Lent, Christmas, and Advent. 

o 2 


a full harmony, or concordance of the four evangelists, adorned 
with many beautiful pictures, which required more than a year 
for the composition, and was divided into 150 heads or chapters. 
For this purpose he set apart a handsome room near the oratory. 
Here he had a large table, two printed copies of the evangelists, 
of the same edition, and great store of the best and strongest 
white paper. Here he spent more than an hour every day in the 
contrivance of this book, and in directing his nieces, who attended 
him for that purpose, how they should cut out such and such 
particular passages out of the two printed copies of any part of 
each evangelist, and then lay them together so as to perfect such 
a head or chapter as he had designed. This they did first roughly, 
and then with nice knives and scissars so neatly fitted each pas- 
sage to the next belonging to it, and afterwards pasted them so 
even and smoothly together, upon large sheets of the best white 
paper, by the help of the rolling-press, that many curious persons 
who saw the work when it was done, were deceived, and thought 
that it had been printed in the ordinary way. This was the 
mechanical method which he followed in compiling his harmony. 
The title of his book * was as foEows : 

"The Actions, Doctrines, and other passages touching our 
blessed Lord and Saviour J. Christ, as they are related in the 
four Evangelists, reduced into one compleat body of history: 
wherein that which is severally related by them is digested into 
order ; and that which is jointly related by all or any of them is, 
first, expressed in their own words, by way of comparison ; 
secondly, brought into one narration by way of composition; 
thirdly, extracted into one clear context by way of collection ; 
yet so as whatsoever was omitted in the context is inserted by 
way of supplement in another print, and in such a manner as all 
the four evangelists may be easily read severally and distinctly ; 
each apart and alone from first to last : and in each page through- 
out the book are sundry pictures added, expressing either the 
facts themselves, or their types and figures; or other things 
Appertaining thereunto. The whole divided into 150 heads." 

I cannot help transcribing here a passage from Dr. Priestley's 
pn-face to his Harmony of the Evangelists. "If I should be 
thought to have succeeded better than the generality of my pre- 
decessors, I shall attribute it chiefly to the mechanical 

s His book.'] See p. 218. 


I made use of in the arrangement of it ; which were as follow. I 
procured two printed copies of the gospel, and having cancelled 
one side of every sheet, I cut out all the separate histories, &c. 
in each gospel, and having a large table appropriated to that use, 
I placed all the corresponding parts opposite to each other, and 
in such an order as the comparison of them (which when 
they were brought so near together was exceedingly easy) 

" In this loose order the whole harmony lay before me a con- 
siderable time, in which I kept reviewing it at my leisure, and 
changing the places of the several parts of it, till I was as well 
satisfied with the arrangement of them, as the nature of the case 
would admit. I then fixed the places of all these separate papers, 
by pasting them, in the order in which they lay before me, upon 
different pieces of pasteboard, carefully numbered and by this 
means also divided into sections." 

This exact agreement in contrivance between two men of un- 
common genius and abilities, with respect both to the plan and 
conduct of the work ; men living at a hundred and sixty years 
difference of time, men too in learning, penetration, and judgment 
perfectly qualified for so arduous an undertaking, affords the 
strongest presumptive proof of the excellence of the method, 
and at the same time the highest recommendation of it to the 
observation and practice of all who are engaged in a similar 
course of study. 

Several of the harmonies were afterward finished upon the 
same plan with some improvements : one of these books was pre- 
sented to Mr. Ferrar's most dear and intimate friend, the well 
known Mr. Geo. Herbert, who in his letter of thanks for it, calls 
it a most inestimable jewel ; another was given to his other sin- 
gular friend Dr. Jackson. The fame of this work, the produc- 
tion of a man so celebrated as the author had been, soon reached 
the ears of the king, who took the first opportunity to make him- 
self personally acquainted with it, by obtaining the perusal of it. 

Mr. Ferrar about this time wrote several very valuable trea- 
tises, and made several translations from authors in different 
languages, on subjects which he thought might prove serviceable 
to the cause of religion. Among others, having long had a high 
opinion of John Valdesso's Hundred and ten Considerations 6 , &c. 

6 Hundred and ten Considerations.] See note at p. 47. 


a book which he met with in his travels, he now (in 1632) trans- 
lated it from the Italian copy into English, and sent it to be exa- 
mined and censured by his friend Mr. Herbert, before it was 
made public. Which excellent book Mr. Herbert returned with 
many marginal notes, and criticisms, as they are now printed 
with it ; with an affectionate letter also recommending the publi- 

In May, 1633, his majesty set out upon his journey to Scot- 
land, and in his progress he stepped a little out of his road to 
view Little Gidding in Huntingdonshire, which by the common 
people was called the Protestant Nunnery. The family having 
notice, met his majesty at the extremity of the parish, at a place 
called, from this event, the King's Close : and in the form of 
their solemn processions conducted him to their church, which 
he viewed with great pleasure. He enquired into, and was in- 
formed of the particulars of their public, and domestic oeconomy : 
but it does not appear that at this time he made any considerable 
stay. The following summer his majesty and the queen passed 
two nights at Apethorpe in Northamptonshire, the seat of Mild- 
may Fane earl of Westmoreland. From thence he sent one of 
his gentlemen to intreat (his majesty's own word) a sight of The 
Concordance, which, he had heard, was some time since done at 
Gidding ; with assurance that in a few days, when he had per- 
used it, he would send it back again. Mr. N. Ferrar was then 
in London, and the family made some little demur, not thinking 
it worthy to be put into his majesty's hands ; but at length they 
delivered it to the messenger. But it was not returned in a few 
days, or weeks : some months were elapsed, when the gentleman 
brought it back from the king, who was then at London. He 
said he had many things to deliver to the family from his master. 
First, to yield the king's hearty thanks to them all for the sight 
of the book, which passed the report he had heard of it. Then 
to signify his approbation of it in all respects. Next to excuse 
him in two points. The first for not returning it so soon as he 
had promised : the other for that he had in many places of the 
-I'in written notes in it with his own hand. And (which I 
know will please you) said the gentleman, you will find an insta 
"f my master's humility in one of the margins. The place I 
i> \\ In TO he had written something with his own hand, and 
tin n put it out again, acknowledging that he was mistaken in 
that particular. Certainly this was .m act of great humility in 


the king, and worthy to be noted ; and the book itself is much 
graced by it. 

The gentleman farther told them, that the king took such de- 
light in it, that he passed some part of every day in perusing it. 
And lastly, he said, to show you how true this is, and that what 
I have declared is no court compliment, I am expressly com- 
manded by my master, earnestly to request of you, Mr. Nicholas 
Ferrar, and of the young ladies, that you would make him one of 
these books for his own use, and if you will please to undertake 
it, his majesty says you will do him a most acceptable service. 

Mr. Nicholas Ferrar and the young ladies returned their most 
humble duty, and immediately set about what the king desired. 
In about a year's time it was finished ; and it was sent to Lon- 
don to be presented to his majesty by Dr. Laud, then made arch- 
bishop of Canterbury, and Dr. Cosins, master of Peterhouse, 
whose turn it was to wait that month, being one of the king^s 
chaplains. This book was bound entirely by Mary Collet (one of 
Mr. Ferrar's nieces) all wrought in gold, in a new and most 
elegant fashion. 

The king after long and serious looking it over, said, " This is 
indeed a most valuable work, and in many respects worthy to be 
presented to the greatest prince upon earth. For the matter it 
contains is the richest of all treasures. The laborious composure 
of it into this excellent form of an harmony ; the judicious con- 
trivance of the method, the curious workmanship in so neatly 
cutting out and disposing the text, the nice laying of these costly 
pictures, and the exquisite art expressed in the binding, are, I 
really think, not to be equalled. I must acknowledge myself to 
be indeed greatly indebted to the family for this jewel : and what- 
ever is in my power, I shall at any time be ready to do for any 
of them." 

Then after some pause, taking the book 7 into his hands he 
said, " And what think you, my lord of Canterbury, and you Dr. 
Cosins, if I should ask a second favour of these good people 2 
indeed I have another request to make to them, and it is this. 
I often read over the lives and actions of the kings of Judah 

7 Taking the book.~\ This, and another of these books, both in fine preser- 
vation, are still extant in the British Museum (as I am obligingly informed 
by John Holmes, Esq., one of the librarians, to whom I am very largely 
indebted, in the entire progress of this third edition [1839] through the press), 
and is part of the royal collection given by king George II. to the Museum, 
at its foundation. See pp. 218, 219. 


and Israel in the books of the Kings, and the Chronicles, and I 
frequently meet with difficulties. I should be much obliged if 
Mr. Ferrar would make me such a book as may bring all these 
matters together into one regular narration, that I may read the 
whole in one continued story, and yet at the same time may be 
able to see them separate ; or what belongs to one book, and 
what to another. I have long ago moved several of my chap- 
lains to undertake this business : but it is not done : I suppose it 
is attended with too much difficulty. Will you, my lord, apply 
for me to Mr. Ferrar V The archbishop wrote to Mr. Ferrar, 
acquainting him with the king's desires ; and Mr. Ferrar imme- 
diately set himself about the work. 

In the course of little more than a year, about Oct. 1636, 
Mr. Ferrar and his assistants completed the harmony of the two 
books of the Kings and Chronicles, and young Nicholas Ferrar 
bound it in purple velvet, most richly gilt. It was sent to the 
archbishop and Dr. Cosins, to be by them presented to the king. 
His majesty was extremely delighted with it, saying, " it was a 
fit mirror for a king's daily inspection. Herein," he said, " I shall 
behold God's mercies and judgments : his punishing of evil 
princes, and rewarding the good. To these his promises, to 
those his threatenings most surely accomplished. I have a 
second time gained a great treasure. What I said of the first 
book, I may most justly say of this ; and I desire you will let 
them know my high esteem both of it and of them." Dr. Cosins 
then presented a letter from Mr. Ferrar, which the king declared 
he thought the finest composition he ever read. In farther dis- 
coursing of these harmonies with the divines, the king determined 
that for public benefit they should be printed under his own 
immediate command and protection. But the troubles of the 
ensuing times prevented this laudable purpose from being car- 
ried into execution. The title of this second harmony was as 
follows : 

" The History of the Israelites from the death of King Saul, 
to their carrying away captive into Babylon : collected out of the 
books of the Kings, and Chronicles, in the words of the text, 
without any alteration of importance by addition to or diminu- 
tion from them. Whereby, first, all the actions and 
related in any of the books of the Kings and Chronicles, whether 
jointly or severally, are reduced into the body of one complete 
narration. Secondly, they are digested into an orderly depend- 
ance one upon the other. Thirdly, many difficult places are 


cleared, and many seeming differences between the books of 
Kings and Chronicles compounded. And this is so contrived, as 
notwithstanding the mutual compositions of the books into one 
historical collection, yet the form of each of them is preserved 
entire, in such a manner as they may be easily read, severally 
and distinctly from first to last. Together with several tables. 
The first, summarily declaring the several heads or chapters into 
which the historical collection is divided. The second, specifiying 
what passages are related severally in the aforesaid books, and 
what are jointly related by them both : as also in what heads and 
chapters in this collection they may be found. The third, shewing 
where every chapter of the texts themselves, and every part of 
them may be readily found in this historical collection." 

Fragments of one copy of this, and some other of the harmo- 
nies, with some of the prints belonging to them, and the three 
tables specified in the title above, have lately been found among 
the old MSS. of the family : but very much disjointed and con- 
fused, and considerably hurt by time and other injuries. 

These are probably the last works of this sort, executed by 
Mr. Ferrar, who died in little more than a year, and was very 
weak and infirm a considerable time before his death. But the 
connexion between the king and this family did not cease on Mr. 
Ferrar's death. For it appears from several papers still in being, 
that there was what may be justly called a friendly intercourse 
subsisting even till the distressful year 1646. For during this 
interval, and after the death of Mr. Ferrar, other harmonies of 
other parts of the Scripture were drawn up by Nicholas Ferrar 
jun. upon the plan of his uncle, by the particular direction of the 
king, for the use of the prince ; and were to him presented in the 
years 1639, 1641, and at other times. This extraordinary young 
man was particularly favoured by the king, who had undertaken 
to send him to Oxford under his own immediate protection ; and 
to take upon himself the care and expence of completing his 
education. But his ill state of health which ended in an early 
death, prevented the execution of this benevolent intention. The 
particular memorials 8 of this intercourse were probably lost in 
the ensuing distractions. 

On the 27th of April, in that fatal year (1646) the king left 

8 The particular memorials.'] These memorials, the subject deservedly of 
Dr. Peckard's repeated regret, have happily been preserved, and are now 
published here from a MS. (No. 251) in the Lambeth Library. 


Oxford. Being unresolved how to dispose of himself, he shifted 
about from place to place, with his trusty chaplain, Dr. Hudson, 
and at length came to Downham in Norfolk. From thence he 
came on May the 2nd very privately and in the night to Gidding. 
Mr. Nicholas Ferrar had been dead several years. But the king 
having an entire confidence in the family, made himself known to 
Mr. John Ferrar, who received his majesty with all possible duty 
and respect. But fearing that Gidding, from the known loyalty 
of the family, might be a suspected place, for better concealment 
he conducted his majesty to a private house at Coppinford, an 
obscure village at a small distance from Gidding, and not far 
from Stilton. Here the king slept, and went from thence, May 
3, to Stamford, where he lodged one night, staid till eleven the 
next night, and from thence went, on May 5, to the Scotch army. 

Of the king's coming at this time in this state of distress 
to Gidding, I collect from various authorities the following 

In the examination of Dr. Michael Hudson, taken May 16, 
1646, before Henry Dawson, esq. deputy mayor of Newcastle 
upon Tyne, he deposes that he came from Oxford on Monday 
morning about 3 o'clock, April 27 ; and that his majesty, Mr. 
Ashburnham, and himself, made use of an old pass, which they 
had gotten from an officer in Oxford. That they went first to 
Dorchester, then to Henley, Maidenhead, and so on the road 
toward London : but he refused to say where the king lodged on 
Monday night. That when they turned to go northward, his 
majesty lodged Tuesday, Ap. 28, at Whethamstead near to St. 
Albans. That from thence his majesty went to a small village 
within seven miles from Newmarket, and lodged in a common 
inn, Wednesday 29. From thence they went to a place called 
Downham, where his majesty lodged, Thursday, 30. From 
thence to Coppinford, where his majesty lodged, Friday, May 1. 
From thence to Stamford, May 2, where they stayed till midnight. 
May 3. Went from thence, Monday, May 4, and came to the 
Scotch army, Tuesday, May 5. 

This is the substance of the examination of Dr. Hudson con- 
(ruing the king's journey from Oxford to the Scotch army 9 . 

Scotch army.] [Michael Hudson was born in Westmoreland, and edu- 
cated in Queen's college, Oxford. In 1630 he was made fellow of that col- 
lege. He was afterwards beneficed in Lincolnshire. But when the king set 
up his standard he left his benefice and adhered to him. After the battle at 


In the letter from Miles Corbett and Valentine Walton to 
Mr. Lenthall the speaker, directed, Haste, Haste, Post Haste, 
the account agrees with the examination of Dr. Hudson, with 
respect to the king's coming with Hudson to Downham, and 
lodging there on Thursday the last day of April, but states that 
they cannot learn where they were on Friday night. It after- 
wards mentions several particular circumstances, as their being 
at a blind alehouse at Crimplesham about eight miles from Lynn, 
and the king's being in a parson's habit, and changing his black 
coat and cassock for a grey one procured by Mr. Skipwith ; and 
that his majesty bought a new hat at Downham. But these 
particulars seemed to be delivered more from hearsay accounts, 
than regular evidence. The main purport of this letter confirms 
the deposition in Dr. Hudson's examination, that the king 
certainly was at Downham, on the last of April, or the first of 
May : and in fact he was there on both days, coming to that 
place on the last of April, and leaving it on the first of May. 

Mr. Ferrar's MS. asserts that the king came very privately to 
Gidding, May 2. Dr. Hudson says the king slept at Coppinford, 

Edge-hill he retired to Oxford, and in February, 1642, was created D.D. and 
made chaplain to his majesty. Soon after, he had an important employment 
in the army, in the north, under the command of the marquis of Newcastle. 
On the 8th of June, 1646, he was discovered at Rochester, brought to Lon- 
don, and committed prisoner to London-house. On Nov. 18, he escaped 
from his prison, and in January following he was retaken, and committed 
close prisoner to the Tower. He escaped also from thence in the beginning 
of 1648. On the 6th of June that year, intelligence was brought to the par- 
liament that the royalists were in arms in Lincolnshire, under the command 
of Dr. Hudson ; and two days after, information came from col. Tho. Waite 
that he had suppressed the insurrection of malignants at Stamford, in Lin- 
colnshire, and had killed their commander, Dr. Hudson. 

The circumstances of his death were attended with peculiar barbarity. He 
fled with the chief of his party to Woodcroft-house, near Peterborough. The 
house being forced, and most of the royalists taken, Hudson, with some of 
the most courageous, went to the battlements, where they defended them- 
selves for some time. At length, upon promise of quarter, they yielded ; but 
when they had so done, the promise of quarter was broken. Hudson being 
thrown over the battlements, caught hold of a spout, or out-stone, and there 
hung : but his hands being cut off, he fell into the moat underneath, much 
wounded, and desired to come on land to die there. As he approached the 
shore, one of his enemies beat his brains out with the butt end of his musket. 
See A. Wood, vol. ii. col. 113. See also the interesting papers in Peck's 
Desiderata Curiosa, b. ix. vol. ii. p. 347 81. On this sir Walter Scott has 
founded the story of Dr. Rochecliffe in " Woodstock." 


May 1. These two accounts may easily be reconciled. Dr. 
Hudson reckons the night, or time of his majesty"^ lodging and 
sleeping, as belonging to the preceding day, on which he came 
from Downham or Crimplesham, which was May the first. But 
as the king came very privately to Gidding, and in the very dead 
of the night ; and as it must necessarily require some time to 
provide for his lodging at Coppinford, this would of course break 
into the morning of May the 2nd : and Mr. Ferrar might with 
equal propriety say that the king came very privately to Gidding, 
and that he conducted his majesty to sleep at Coppinford, May 2. 
These circumstances must awaken the compassion 10 of every 
feeling heart, even amongst those who are disposed to lay the 
heaviest load of blame upon the king : since they are mentioned 
not as an insinuation that he was free from faults, or as an 
extenuation of those with which he might be justly charged : but 
as a proof of very affecting distress, and a strong instance of the 
instability of worldly greatness. He had his faults ; and who hath 
not ? but let it be remembered that there were virtues to set in 
the balance against them. 

I have been anxious to ascertain this point, from a desire to 
make it known beyond all doubt, what was the very last place 
where this most unfortunate prince was in the hands of those 
whom he might safely trust, and under the protection of an 
honest and confidential friend; and that this place was the 
residence, and now contains the remains of that worthy person to 
whose memory these pages are devoted. 

In fitting up the house at Gidding, moral sentences, and short 
passages from the Scriptures " had been put up in various places ; 
and in the great parlour was an inscription which gave rise to 

10 Awaken the compassion.'] The distresses of this unhappy monarch, inde- 
pendently of the last bloody scene of the tragedy, excited much commiseration 
in the English hearts even of many who never sided amongst his partizans in 
the war. We are told in the Life of Mr. Thomas Rosewell, afterwards a 
dissenting minister, and who was found guilty of treason in the reign of 
Charles II., that "travelling a little from home, he accidentally saw king 
Charles the First, in the fields, sitting at dinner under a tree, with some few 
persons about him. This made such deep impressions in his young and 
tender mind, as disposed him to the greater compassion and loyalty towards 
that unhappy monarch." Trial of Mr. Thomas Rosewell, p. 5. 

II Passages from the Scriptures.'] This was according to a practice intro- 
duced, both into houses and churches, about the time of the Reformation. 

" Christophor. I am loth to go so soone out of this your hall, which 


much speculation and censure. It was nevertheless first approved 
of by several judicious divines, and particularly by Mr. Herbert, 

feedeth mine eies with so many godly and goodly spectacles. Philemon. 
Why is here any thing that you thinke worthy to be looked upon ? Chris- 
toph. Every thing is here so pleasaunte and comfortable to the eye of a 
Christian man, that he being in this haull may justlye seeme to be in a 
delectable paradise, I had almost sayd in another heaven. For here is 
nothing dumme : all things speake. Theophile. I pray you what is there 
written upon your parclose dore ? Philem. The saying of Christ, I am the 
dore ; by me if any man entreth in, he shall be safe, and shall goe in and out, 
and shall find pasture. This is done to put me and my householde in 
remembrance that Christ is the dore by whome we must enter into the 
favour of God. Eusebius. This is Christenly done. What is this, that is 
written upon your chimney ? Phil. The saying of the prophete Esay, The 
fire of them shall not be quenched. Christ. This is a terrible and hard 
saying. Phil. I have paynted this sentence in that place, that as the other 
fixed upon the dore maketh me to rejoyse and to put my whole afiyaunce in 
Christ, so this in like manner should absterre and feare me and mine from 
doying evil whan by lookyng on this text we consider with ourselves the 
unquenchable flames of hell fier. Euseb. What have ye there written 
in your window ? Philem. Christes saying in the Gospel of S. John, I am 
the light of the world. He that followeth me walketh not in darkness, but 
shall have the light of life. Theoph. Your table also, me thinke, speaketh. 
Philem. Herein is graven the saying of Christ, Blessed is he that eateth 
bread in the kingdom of God. This is to admonish us, that we should 
not have all our pleasure in eating, drinking, and banketing after the maner 
of Epicures, but rather desier so to live in this world, that after this life we 
may be fed in the joyful kingdom of God by enjoying the most glorious 
sight of the divine majestie. Euseb. What have ye paynted over youre 
table ? Philem. The sayinge of the prophete Esay, yea rather the com- 
maundement of God by his prophet, Breake thy bread to the hungry, and 
leade in the needy and way-faring into thy house. Euseb. I pray you what is 
that your chaires and stoles have carved on them ? Philem. A saying of 
Christ in the Revelation of John ; To him that overcometh will I grant to sit 
with me in my throne. It is not unknowen to you, I am sure, how com- 
fortable a thing it is for a wery body to sit, and to have a restyng place. 
Certes it is a thousande times more comfortable to have a place where body 
and soule after so many great and daungerous conflicts in this miserable 
worlde, may quietly rest. Therefore have I wrytten this texte on my chayres 
and stoles, to put me and myne in remembrance, that if we will find rest 
after this life, we must seriously not dally, but fighte with Satan our enemy." 
The cup, the dishes, the laver, the virginals, the door posts, all had their 
respective superscriptions in the house of Philemon, which are recounted in 
the progress of the Dialogue. The last instance mentioned, is the following : 
" Euseb. I pray you what two great tables have you hanging there openly ? 
Phil. This is the table of the Ten Commaundements, which teacheth us what 
we ought to do, and what to eschewe. The other is a table also which con- 
taineth in it the offices of all degrees and estates. It teacheth us what we 



who advised it to be engraved in brass, and so hung up that it 
might be seen of all. But calumny was now gone forth, and 
nothing could be done at Gidding that was not subjected to the 
severest misrepresentation. The inscription was as follows : 


HE who (by reproof of our errors, 
and remonstrance of that which is 
more perfect) seeks to make us 
better, is welcome as an Angel of 

He who any ways goes about to 
disturb us in that which is and 
ought to be amongst Christians 
(tho* it be not usual in the world) 
is a burden whilst he stays and 
shall bear his judgment whoso- 
ever he be. 

I HE who (by a cheerful partici- 
pation of that which is good) con- 
-n-iiu s firms us in the same, is welcome 
as a Christian Friend. 



HE who faults us in absence for 
that which in presence he made 
shew to approve of, doth by a 
double guilt of flattery and slan- 
der violate the bands both of 
friendship and charity. 

Mother of this Family, 

aged fourscore years, 

(who bids adieu to all fears and hopes of this world, and only 
desires to serve God) 
set up this Table. 

The extraordinary course of life pursued at Gidding, the strict- 

owe to our most noble Prince, to our parentes, and to all superioures. In 
this table every man from the highest degree to the lowest may learne his 
office and duety. Therefore are these two tables red every day openly in my 
house : my wife and children, with all my servaunts beyng called thereunto, 
and giving attendance diligently to the reading of the same. If any of my 
houshold transgresse any parcel of God's lawe, he is brought streight way to 
these tables, and by them is his faulte declared unto hym. This is the order 
of my house. Other correccion than this use I none : yet notwithstanding I 
thanke my Lord God, all doe theyr duety so well, that I cannot wish it to be 
done better." Becon's Christmasse Banket, Works, vol. i. fol. 17, A.D. 1564. 
See also fol. 34. In the reign of queen Mary all the texts of Scripture which 
had been written on the walls of churches were commanded by authority to 
be blotted out and defaced. See Becon's Works, vol. iii. fol. 176. b. and 
's Eccles. Memorials, vol. iii. p. 57. 

rrar's friend, George Herbert, speaking of the country par- 
sonage : " Even the walls are not idle, but something is written or painted 
there, which may excite the reader to a thought of piety ; especially the 
101st Psalm, which is expressed in a fair table, as being the rule of a family." 
A Priest to the Temple, chap. x. 


ness of their rules, their prayers, literally without ceasing, their 
abstinence, mortifications, nightly watchings, and various other 
peculiarities, gave birth to censure in some, and inflamed the 
malevolence of others, but excited the wonder and curiosity of 
all. So that they were frequently visited l with different views by 
persons of all denominations, and of opposite opinions. They 
received all who came with courteous civility ; and from those 
who were inquisitive they concealed nothing : for in truth there 
was not any thing either in their opinions or their practice that 
was in the least degree necessary to be concealed. Whether their 
conduct was a subject of admiration or of imitation is a distinct 
enquiry, which at present there is not any occasion to enter upon. 
They were at the time, notwithstanding all the real good they did, 
severally slandered and vilified : by some they were abused as 
papists ; by others as puritans. Mr. Ferrar himself, though pos- 

1 Frequently visited.] "The nearest gentleman in the neighbourhood was a 
Roman Catholic : yet he and his lady often visited Gidding, without any 
pressing expectations to be paid those respects in the same kind, by a family 
so constantly better employed than in returning visits of compliment. Be- 
sides, the master of their morals used to warn them all, but especially the 
younger people under his care, ' that he is wise and good, and like to con- 
tinue so, that keeps himself out of temptation.' 

" One day his neighbour brought with him to Gidding, three learned priests 
of his own religious communion; one of them a celebrated writer for the 
church of Rome ; all of them full of curiosity to sound a man of such depth 
of learning, of such an excellent understanding, and of so great piety, as 
rumour had attached to the character of Mr. Ferrar. He did not decline 
engaging with them ; in which he was upon a vast advantage above ordinary 
managers of similar controversies, having in his travels, with his own eyes, 
seen their practices, and made it so much his business to compare them with 
their pretences. The conference was spun out to a great length j it was sup- 
ported on all hands with equal temper, and with such acuteness too, as not to 
leave the question where they found it. They traversed every essential point 
of difference between protestant and papist, and parted upon such terms as 
were proper for men who desired at least to maintain the communion of 
charity with each other. 

" One of them afterwards related that he had * seen Little Gidding, the 
place so much in every body's mouth ;' that ' they found the master of the 
house another kind of man than they expected : a deep and solid man, of a 
wonderful memory, sharp-witted, and of a flaming eloquence : one who, 
besides his various reading, spoke out of experience, with insight into things, 
as well as books. 9 In conclusion, he was heard to say, that this man, if he 
lived to make himself known to the world, would give their church her hands 
full to answer him, and trouble them in another manner than Luther had 
done." Brief Memoirs of Nicholas Ferrar (from bishop Turner, &c.) p. 133, 4. 


sessed of uncommon patience, and resignation, yet in anguish of 
spirit complained to his friends, that the perpetual obloquy he 
endured was a sort of unceasing martyrdom 2 . 

Hence violent invectives, and inflammatory pamphlets were 
published against them. Amongst others, not long after Mr. 
Ferraris death, a treatise 3 was addressed to the parliament, en- 

2 Unceasing martyrdom.'] " He was so exercised with contradictions, as no 
man that lived so private as he desired to do, could possibly be more. I 
have heard him say, valuing, not resenting, his own sufferings, in this kind, 
that to fry a faggot was not more martyrdom, than continual obliquy. He was 
torn asunder as with mad horses, or crushed betwixt the upper and under 
milstone of contrary reports; that he was a Papist, and that he was a 
Puritan. What is, if this be not, to be sawn asunder as Esay, stoned as 
Jeremy, made a drum, or tympanized, as other saints of God were ! And 
after his death, when by injunction, which he laid upon his friends when he 
lay on his death bed, a great company of comedies, tragedies, love hymns, 
heroical poems, &c. were burnt upon his grave, as utter enemies to Chris- 
tian principles and practices, (that was his brand) some poor people said, 
He was a conjuror." Oley's Life of Mr. George Herbert, prefixed to his 
Country Parson. 

3 A treatise.] The history of this treatise, which had no little effect at 
the time when it first appeared, and which has not been without some in- 
fluence in our own times, is curious. Sir Thomas Hetley or Hedley, knight, 
a lawyer of some note, who, with Heneage Finch, and others, on the 26th 
June, 1623, had been made serjeant-at-law, was desirous of learning some 
particulars as to the proceedings of the Ferrars family at Gidding, which was 
not very distant from Brampton, where he possessed some property. He 
therefore requested his friend and relation, Edward Lenton, (of Gray's Inn 
and of Notley, or Noctele Abbey, in Buckinghamshire, near Thame,) to visit 
Gidding for that purpose. Some time in the year 1635, Edward Lenton went 
there, and wrote a letter to sir T. Hetley, intituled, " Letter to Sir Thomas 
Hetley, knt., serjeant-at-lawe, vpon his request, to certifie as I found concerninge 
the reputed nunnerie at Giddinge, in Huntingdonshire," giving a very favourable 
account of the Ferrars family, and of their proceedings. This was circulated 
in manuscript, the temper of the times not being very favourable to its ap- 
pearance in print. The author's name was not given, and it appears to have 
been purposely concealed. The British Museum possesses several contem- 
porary copies, one of which is said to be " by a friend :" another has the 
initials " H. S." The Letter was first printed by Thomas Hearne, in his edition 
of Peter Langtoft's Chronicle, Oxford, 1725, vol. i. p. cix., "from a MS. lent to 
the publisher on July 6th, 1724, by Thomas Ward, of Longbridge, near 

ick, esq.," which MS. was signed "H. S.j" and it was again printed 
by Hearne, with the author's real name, in his edition of Th. Caii Vindicite 
Academic Oxonienxis, Oxford, 1730, vol. ii. p. 702. It will also be found at 
the end of the present life, p. 251. 

But although Lenton did not venture to print his letter to Hetley, others 


titled, The Arminian Nunnery, or a brief description and relation 
of the late erected monastical place, called the Arminian Nunnery 
at Little Gidding in Huntingdonshire : humbly addressed to the 
wise consideration of the present parliament. The foundation is by 
a company of Ferrars at Gidding. Printed for Tho. Underhill, 

In which production there is nothing but falshood, or what is 
much worse, truth wilfully so mangled and misrepresented as to 
answer the vilest ends of falshood. And this sort of malignity 
was carried to such a length, that not long before the real tragedy 
of king Charles was perpetrated, certain soldiers of the parliament 
party resolved to plunder the house at Gidding. The family being 
informed of their hasty approach, thought it prudent to fly, and, 
as to their persons, endeavour to escape the intended violence. 

These military zealots, in the rage of what they called reforma- 
tion, ransacked both the church and the house. In doing which 
they expressed a particular spite against the organ. This they 
broke in pieces, of which they made a large fire, and thereat 
roasted several of Mr. Ferrar's sheep, which they had killed in 
his grounds. This done they seized all the plate, furniture, and 
provision which they could conveniently carry away. And in this 
general devastation perished those works of Mr. Nicholas Ferrar, 
which merited a better fate. 

Certainly no family suffered more from less cause of offence : 
for though they were pious and firm members of the church of 

were not so scrupulous. A transcript fell into the hands of some zealous, but 
unprincipled puritan, who interpolated his own observations, and otherwise 
falsified it, and printed it under the title (given above) of " The Arminian Nun- 
nery, fyc." 1641, with a rude wood-cut, on the title page, of a nun and a 
church. This pamphlet is now very rare, but copies are in the British 
Museum and Bodleian libraries, and the former possesses a transcript made 
by Humphrey Wanley, from a copy belonging to Dr. Charlcott, master of 
University College. It has been reprinted by Hearne, in his edition of "Peter 
Langtoffs Chronicle," Oxford, 1725, vol. i. p. cxxv. The modern edition of 
Hearne's work also contains it. Being avowedly a falsification of the truth, 
it has not been thought proper to reprint it here. This false and abusive 
publication naturally excited the attention of John Ferrar, and in reply to his 
remonstrances, Edward Lenton sent him a copy of the true Letter, with an 
explanation, dated Notley, near Thame, 27th October (1642). The same 
causes which prevented the publication of the letter to Hetley, operated to 
keep this letter of explanation in MS. It was first printed by Hearne in his 
edition of Th. Caii Vindicics Acad. Oxon., 1730., vol. ii. p. 693. It will be 
found in the present vol., at p. 251, post. 

VOL. IV. p 


England, they behaved themselves quietly, and with Christian 
benevolence towards all men of all denominations : and although 
they practised austerities which were not exceeded by the severest 
orders of the monastic institutions, yet they neither required 
them from others, nor in themselves attributed any saving merit 
to them ; austerities which mistaken piety thought a duty, but 
which, it must be confessed, have not any proper foundation in 
the Christian institution. 

A short time before the commission of these violences, bishop 
Williams paid his last friendly visit at Gidding, and seeing the 
inscription in the parlour, said to Mr. John Ferrar, " I would 
advise you to take this table down. You see the times grow high 
and turbulent, and no one knows where the rage and madness of 
the people may end. I am just come from Boston, where I was 
used very coarsely. I do not speak as by authority, I only advise 
you as a friend, for fear of offence or worse consequences.' 1 Then 
after sincerely condoling with them on their irreparable misfor- 
tune in the death of Nicholas Ferrar, he bade them his final 
farewell. But ever after continued their firm friend, and con- 
stantly vindicated the family from the many slanders of their false 
accusers. But to return from this digression. 

Mrs. Ferrar, towards the close of her life, seems to have been 
convinced that the mortifications practised by the family, were 
more than were necessary, and she became apprehensive for the 
health, and even for the life of her beloved son. She therefore 
earnestly entreated him, and with many tears besought him, that 
he would relax a little in the severe discipline which he exercised 
upon himself. And he, being an example of filial obedience, com- 
plied in some degree with her request, during the remainder of 
her life : but this was not of long continuance. 

In the year 1635, ten years after coming to Gidding, this ex- 
cellent woman died, aged eighty-three years. Her character, as 
follows, is given by her son Mr. John Ferrar, who collected, and 
left the materials for these memoirs. " Though of so great age, 
at her dying day, she had no infirmity, and scarce any sign of old 
age upon her. Her hearing, sight, and all her senses were very 
good. She had never lost a tooth ; she walked very upright, and 
with great agility. Nor was she troubled with any pains or 
uneasiness of body. While she lived at Gidding she rose, sum- 
mer and winter, at five o'clock, and sometimes sooner. In her 
person she was of a comely presence, and had a countenance so 


full of gravity that it drew respect from all who beheld her. In 
her words she was courteous, in her actions obliging. In her 
diet always very temperate ; saying, she did not live to eat and 
drink, but ate and drank to live. She was a pattern of piety, 
benevolence and charity. And thus she lived and died, esteemed, 
revered, and beloved, of all who knew her." Such are the effects 
of a life of temperance and virtue. 

While his mother was yet living Mr. Ferrar did so far comply 
with her request, that he went to bed, or lay down upon it, from 
nine in the evening till one in the morning, which was his constant 
hour of rising to his devotions. But after her death he never did 
either : but wrapping himself in a loose frieze gown, slept on a 
bear's skin upon the boards. He also watched either in the 
oratory, or in the church three nights in the week. 

These nightly watchings having been frequently mentioned, it 
may not be improper here to give a short account of the rules 
under which they were performed. It was agreed that there 
should be a constant double nightwatch, of men at one end of the 
house, and of women at the other. That each watch should con- 
sist of two or more persons. That the watchings should begin at 
nine o'clock at night, and end at one in the morning. That each 
watch should in those four hours, carefully and distinctly say over 
the whole book of psalms, in the way of Antiphony, one repeat- 
ing one verse, and the rest the other. That they should then 
pray for the life of the king and his sons. The time of their 
watch being ended, they went to Mr. Ferraris door, bade him 
good morrow, and left a lighted candle for him. At one he con- 
stantly rose, and betook himself to religious meditation, founding 
this practice on an acceptation too literal of the passage, At 
midnight will I rise and give thanks, and some other passages of 
similar import. Several religious persons both in the neighbour- 
hood, and from distant places, attended these watchings : and 
amongst these the celebrated Mr. Richard Crashaw, fellow of 
Peterhouse, who was very intimate in the family, and frequently 
came from Cambridge for this purpose, and at his return often 
watched in Little St. Mary's church near Peterhouse *. 

4 Near Peterhouse.~\ [A most respectable author hath given his sanction, if 
not to the severity, at least to a moderate observation of this mode of 
psalmody, in his Comment on the 134th Psalm. 

" Bless ye the Lord all ye servants of the Lord, who by night stand in the 

p 2 


His friends perceiving a visible decay of his strength, remon- 
strated against these austerities, fearing bad consequences to his 
health ; they told him that he was much too strict in his way of 
life ; they advised him to go abroad, to take the air frequently, 
and to admit of some innocent amusement. He replied, "that 
to rise and go to bed when we please, to take the air and get a 
good appetite, to eat heartily, to drink wine, and cheer the spirits, 
to hunt, and hawk, to ride abroad, and make visits, to play at 
cards and dice, these are what the world terms gallant and plea- 
sant things, and recreations fit for a gentleman : but such a life 
would be so great a slavery to me, and withal I think it of so 
dangerous a tendency, that if I was told I must either live in that 
manner, or presently suffer death, the latter would most certainly 
be my choice." 

There cannot be any doubt but that these austerities gradually 
reduced a constitution originally not very strong, and shortened 
the life of a most virtuous, and most valuable man. 

house of the Lord. Bless him in the chearful and busy hours of the day : 
bless him in the solemn and peaceful watches of the night. 

" The pious Mr. Nicholas Ferrar exhibited in the last century an instance 
of a protestant family, in which a constant course of psalmody was appointed, 
and so strictly kept up, that through the whole four and twenty hours of day 
and night, there was no portion of time when some of the members were 
not employed in performing that most pleasant part of duty and devotion." 
Dr. Home. 

The high degree of veneration in which Mr. Ferrar held the book of 
Psalms appears from the peculiar attention he bestowed upon it ; as hath 
been particularly related in the foregoing part of these memoirs. Nor is he 
singular in this respect. Dr. Home says, the " Psalms are an epitome of 
the Bible, adapted to the purposes of devotion. That for this purpose they 
are adorned with figures, and set off with all the graces of poetry, and poetry 
itself designed yet farther to be recommended by the charms of music, thus 
consecrated to the service of God ; that so, delight may prepare the way for 
improvement, and pleasure become the handmaid of wisdom, while every 
turbulent passion is calmed by sacred melody, and the evil spirit still dispos- 
sessed by the harp of the son of Jesse." " What is there necessary for man to 
know," says the pious and judicious Hooker, " which the Psalms are not able 
to teach ? They are to beginners, an easy and familiar introduction, a mighty 
augmentation of all virtue and knowledge in such as are entered before, and 
a strong confirmation to the most perfect among others." Hooker. See 
Dr. Home's Pref. to his Commentary. 

On such respectable authority, I may safely recommend a proper degree of 
attention to the example of Mr. Ferrar, so far as time, and opportunity, and 
the peculiar circumstances of situation will admit.] 


About three months before his death, perceiving in himself 
some inward faintness, and apprehending that his last hour was 
now drawing very near, he broke off abruptly from writing any 
farther on a subject which was now under his consideration. This 
breaking off is yet to be seen in that unfinished treatise, with his rea- 
son for discontinuing it. He then began to write down Contem- 
plations on Death in the following words : 

" The remembrance of death is very powerful to restrain us 
from sinning. For he who shall well consider that the day will 
come (and he knoweth not how soon) when he shall be laid on a 
sick bed, weak and faint, without ease and almost without 
strength, encompassed with melancholy thoughts, and over- 
whelmed with anguish ; when on one side, his distemper increasing 
upon him, the physician tells him that he is past all hope of life, 
and on the other, his friends urge him to dispose of his worldly 
goods, and share his wealth among them : that wealth which he 
procured with trouble, and preserved with anxiety : that wealth 
which he now parts from with sorrow : when again the priest calls 
on him to take the preparatory measures for his departure : when 
he himself now begins to be assured that here he hath no abiding 
city : that this is no longer a world for him : that no more suns 
will rise and set upon him : that for him there will be no more 
seeing, no more hearing, no more speaking, no more touching, no 
more tasting, no more fancying, no more understanding, no more 
remembering, no more desiring, no more loving, no more delights 
of any sort to be enjoyed by him ; but that death will at one 
stroke deprive him of all these things : that he will speedily be 
carried out of the house which he had called his own, and is now 
become another's : that he will be put into a cold, narrow grave : 
that earth will be consigned to earth, ashes to ashes, and dust to 
dust : let any man duly and daily ponder these things, and how 
can it be that he should dare " 

Here the strength of this good man failed him, and his essay 
is left thus unfinished. 

On the second of November he found that his weakness 
increased, yet he went to church, and on that day officiated for 
the last time. After this, his faintness continued gradually to 
increase, but he suffered not the least degree of bodily pain. 
He conversed with his family, and earnestly encouraged them to 
persevere in the way he had pointed out to them. And addressing 
himself particularly to his brother, said, " My dear brother, I 


must now shortly appear before God, and give an account of what 
I have taught this family. And here with a safe conscience I 
can say, that I have delivered nothing to you but what I thought 
agreeable to his word : therefore abide steadily by what I have 
taught. Worship God in spirit and in truth. I will use no 
more words. One thing however I must add, that you may be 
both forewarned, and prepared. Sad times 5 are coming on, 
very sad times indeed ; you will live to see them." Then grasping 
his brother's hand, he said, U 0h ! my brother ! I pity you, who 
must see these dreadful alterations. And when you shall see 
the true worship of God brought to nought, and suppressed, 
then look, and fear that desolation is nigh at hand. And in 
this great trial may God of his infinite mercy support and deliver 

The third day before his death he summoned all his family 
round him, and then desired his brother to go and mark out a 
place* for his grave according to the particular directions he 

6 Sad times.'] " When some farmers near the place where master Ferrar 
lived, somewhat before these times, desired longer leases to be made them, 
he intimated, that seven years would be long enough. Troublous times were 
coming : they might thank God if they enjoyed them so long, in peace." 
Oley's Life of Mr. George Herbert. "When these sad times were come, 
religion and loyalty were such eye sores, that all the Ferrars fled away, and 
dispersed, and took joyfully the spoiling of their goods. All that they had 
restored to the church, all that they had bestowed upon sacred comeliness, 
all that they had gathered for their own livelihood and for alms, was seized 
upon as a lawful prey, taken from superstitious persons." Racket's Life of 
Abp. Williams, part 2. p. 53. 

6 Mark out a place.'] "Three days before his death, at about eight o'clock 
in the morning, he summoned all his family around him, and addressed his 
brother John to this effect : * Brother, I would have you go to the church, 
and at the west end, at the door where we enter the church, I would have 
you measure from the steps seven feet to the westward, and at the end of 
those seven feet, there let my grave be made.' His brother stood almost 
drowned in tears, as in truth were all the standers-by : indeed never had a 
family more cause to bewail a loss. Mr. Ferrar continued : ' Brother, that 
first place of the length of seven feet, I leave for your burying-place ; you 
are my elder brother : God, I hope, will let you there take-up your resting- 
place, till we all rise again in joy/ When his brother returned, saying it was 
done as he desired ; ' then go,' he added, ' and remove from my study those 
three large hampers full of books, that stand there locked up these many 
years. They are comedies, tragedies, heroic poems, and romances : let them 
be carried to the place marked out for my grave, and there, upon it, see you 
burn them all immediately.' And this he uttered with some vehemence and 


then gave. When his brother returned, saying it was done as 
he desired, he requested them all in presence of each other to 
take out of his study three large hampers full of books, which had 
been there locked up many years. " They are comedies, tragedies, 
heroic poems, and romances ; let them be immediately burnt 
upon the place marked out for my grave : and when you shall 
have so done, come back and inform me." When information 
was brought him that they were all consumed, he desired that 
this act might be considered as the testimony of his disapproba- 
tion of all such productions, as tending to corrupt the mind of 
man, and improper for the perusal of every good and sincere 

On the first of December, 1637, he found himself declining 
very fast, and desired to receive the sacrament : after which, and 
taking a most affectionate farewell of all his family, without a 
struggle, or a groan, he expired in a rapturous ecstacy 7 of 

Thus lived, and thus died Nicholas Ferrar, the best of sons, of 
brothers, and of friends, on Monday, Dec. 2, 1637, precisely as 
the clock struck one : the hour at which for many years he con- 
stantly rose to pay his addresses to heaven. 

indignation, adding, * Go, brother ; let it be done, let it be done ; and then 
come again all of you to me/ 

" These books had been carefully locked up ever since the family had taken 
up their abode at Gidding, in order that no one should make use of them, or 
see them. There were many hundreds in several languages, which Mr. 
Ferrar had procured at different places in his travels, some of them with 
much search and cost. 

" His orders were obeyed. The vain things which once had charmed him, 
were sacrificed over the spot which was to receive his mortal remains ; and 
the smoke and flame of this holocaust, as they flared from the eminence on 
which the house and church stood, excited the attention and alarm of the 
neighbourhood, and drew together very many persons, who imagined a 
destructive fire was happening at Gidding. 

" When the people saw what was doing, they went away, and reported 
that Mr. Ferrar was dying, and his books burning. Within a few days the 
report of this transaction had assumed another feature, and it was currently 
asserted in the neighbouring market towns, that he would not die in peace 
until he had burned all his books of magic and conjuration. 

. . . . " When his brother returned, and assured him that they were all 
burnt, he sat up in his bed, and poured out his soul in hearty thanksgivings 
to Almighty God." Brief Memoirs, fyc. (from Bp. Turner), p. 1826. 

7 A rapturous ecstacy. ,] See Brief Memoirs of Nicholas Ferrar (from Bp. 
Turner) by the Rev. T. M. Macdonogh, p. 18891. 


That he was eminently pious towards God, benevolent towards 
man, and perfectly sincere in all his dealings: that he was 
industrious beyond his strength, and indefatigable in what he 
thought his duty : that he was blessed by providence with uncom- 
mon abilities ; and by unremitted exertion of his various talents 
attained many valuable accomplishments, is very manifest from 
the preceding memoirs, and is the least that can be said in his 
praise ; and though greatly to his honour, is yet no more than 
that degree of excellence which may have been attained by many. 
But the spiritual exaltation of mind by which he rose above all 
earthly considerations of advantage, and devoted himself entirely 
to God, whom in the strictest sense he loved with all his heart, 
with all his soul, and with all his strength, being united to the 
active virtues of a citizen of the world, gives him a peculiar pre- 
eminence even among those who excel in virtue. For though he 
practised self-denial to the utmost, and exercised religious seve- 
rities upon himself scarce inferior to those of the recluses who 
retired to deserts, and shut themselves up in dens and caves of 
the earth, yet he did not, like them, by a solitary and morose 
retirement, deprive himself of the power continually to do good, 
but led a life of active virtue and benevolence. His youth was 
spent in an incessant application to learned studies, and the time 
of his travel was given to the acquisition of universal wisdom. 
On his return home, in conducting the affairs of an important 
establishment, he displayed uncommon abilities, integrity and 
spirit. As a member of the house of commons he gained dis- 
tinguished honour, and was appointed the principal manager to 
prosecute, and bring to justice the great man and corrupt 
minister of that time. And having thus discharged the duties of 
a virtuous citizen, he devoted the rest of his life to the instruction 
of youth, to works of Christian charity, and to the worship of 
God in a religious retirement, while he was yet in possession of 
his health and strength, and in the prime of manhood. That 
like the great author, who was his daily and nightly study and 
admiration, the royal Psalmist, he might not sacrifice to God, 
that which cost him nothing. In one word, he was a rare 
example of that excellence in which are blended all the brilliant 
cjualitifs of the great man, with all the amiable virtues of the 


As a sequel to the preceding memoirs, I will subjoin a short 
account of Mr. Nich. Ferrar, jun. as being proper, if not neces- 
sary, to clear up some difficulties concerning the works of these 
two extraordinary persons, who were blessed with a similarity of 
genius, and possessed uncommon accomplishments in learning 
and virtue. 

Nicholas Ferrar, jun. was the son of John Ferrar, esq. (elder 
brother to the sen. Nicholas) and Bathsheba, daughter of Mr. 
Israel Owen of London. He was bom in the year 1620. By a 
picture of him in the editor's possession, taken when he might 
be something more than a year old, he appears to have been a 
robust and healthy child. When he became capable of instruc- 
tion his uncle took him under his own immediate care, and 
finding in him a quickness of parts, and a turn of disposition 
congenial to his own, he instructed, and assisted him in the 
same course of studies which he himself had pursued in the early 
part of his life. 

In this he made such a rapid proficiency, as was the asto- 
nishment of all who knew him, and, could it not be proved by 
sufficient testimony, might occasion a great difficulty of belief. 

It cannot be expected that the life of a young man, who scarce 
ever went from the sequestered place of his education, and died 
when he was but little more than twenty years of age, should 
abound with incidents ; but if the term of existence were to be 
measured by virtue and knowledge, few would be found who have 
lived so long. 

This extraordinary youth was dearly beloved of his uncle, who 
spared no diligence or expense in his education, providing able 
tutors both in the sciences and in languages, and bestowing great 
part of his own time in his instruction. He too like his uncle, 
with uncommon quickness of parts, and extraordinary strength of 
memory, possessed an equal ardour for improvement, and an 
indefatigable spirit of application. 

He also was the constant attendant of his uncle in his religious 
exercises, and particularly in the nightly watches, and acts of 
devotion. And it is to be feared that these (may I say ?) too 
severe exertions might in some degree tend to shorten the term 
of life. 

He was but seventeen at the death of his uncle, and he 
survived him but four years. He died May 19, 1640, in his 
twenty-first year. 


The first work in which young N. Ferrar appears to have 
been employed by his uncle was the translation of Mynsinger^s 
Devotions ; a volume containing a very large collection of prayers 
for all sorts and conditions of men. N. Ferrar, sen. commended 
this book of Occasional Devotions as the best he had ever seen 
upon the subject, and said that it could not but do much good in 
the world. This the nephew performed when he was about four- 
teen years of age. His greater works, as they are arranged in 
the original MS. stand as follows : and I give them in the very 
words of the MS. without correction of some little inaccuracies in 
the account, which it is hoped will meet with pardon *. 


Upon your request, and bound by the great obligation of your 
worth, I have thus scribbled out, what here follows; rather 
willing to shame myself in this kind, than not to fulfil your 
desires. Such as it is, you will please to accept, from, 

Your much obliged in all love and service, 

J. F. 


Glory be to God on High. 
The actions, doctrines, and other passages touching our blessed Lord and 

8 With pardon.'] In the room of what follows in Dr. Peckard's Life, from 
the conclusion of this paragraph, (from p. 260 to p. 278) the reader is here 
presented with a much more complete, and extremely interesting account, 
transcribed, by the permission of his grace the archbishop of Canterbury, 
from a MS. (No. 251) in the Lambeth library. These papers appear to have 
been written by Mr. John Ferrar, the father of the extraordinary young man 
to whom they refer, the eldest brother of Nicholas Ferrar, sen. and the com- 
piler of the original MS. from which Dr. Peckard's Memoirs of the elder 
Nicholas are taken. They were written probably in the year 1653; but to 
whom they are addressed, it does not appear. 

* First Work.] A. copy of this work, of which the title, with one or two 
trifling variations, agrees with that given above, but dated in 1 635, is in the 
British Museum. See above, p. 199, note. It is in old green morocco 
binding richly gilt. The present editor has also seen, in the possession of 
his friend the Rev. Thomas Dowdier, the representative of the last baronet 
of the Cotton family, another copy of this work, dated 1635. Conington, 
the seat of the Cottons, is not more than five miles from Little Gidding. Of 
the Fenrar volumes given to George Herbert and Dr. Thomas Jackson (see 
p. 197) no trace has been found. Mr. Mapletoft's was afterwards in the 


Saviour Jesus Christ, as they are related by the Four Evangelists, reduced 
into one complete body of history ; wherein that which is severally related by 
them, is digested into order, and that which is jointly related by all, or any of 
them, is first expressed in their own words, by way of comparison ; secondly, 
brought into one narration, by way of composition ; thirdly, extracted into 
one clear context, by way of collection : yet so as whatsoever was omitted in 
the context, is inserted by way of supplement in another print, and in such 
a manner as all the Four Evangelists may easily be read severally, and dis- 
tinctly, each a-part and alone, from first to last 1 . Done at Little Gidding, 
anno 1630. 

In each page throughout the whole book were sundry exquisite pictures 
added, expressing either the facts themselves, or other types and figures, or 
matters appertaining thereunto, much to the pleasure of the eye, and delight 
to the reader. 

2. SECOND WoRK 2 . 

The history of the Israelites, from the death of king Saul, to the carrying 
away captive into Babylon : collected out of the books of Kings and Chroni- 
cles, in the words of the texts themselves, without any alteration of importance 
by addition to them, or diminution from them : whereby, first, all the actions 
and passages, which are in either of the books of Kings or Chronicles, whe- 
ther jointly or severally, are reduced into the body of one complete narration ; 
secondly, they are digested into an orderly dependancy one upon the other ; 
thirdly, many difficult places are cleared: and many seeming differences 
between the books of Kings and Chronicles compounded : and all this so 
contrived, as notwithstanding these mutual compositions of the books of 
Kings and Chronicles in this historical collection, yet the form of each 

possession of Mr. Heming of Hillingdon ; and other copies have been said to 
exist in the libraries of the marquis of Salisbury, and St. John's College, 

1 First to last.'] From a copy of this Harmony Dr. Peckard produces 
(p. 274) the following memorandum : 

"This book was presented by my great-grandmother, by my honoured 
mother's two sisters (the daughters of John and Susanna Collet), and by 
their uncle Nicholas Ferrar, who was my godfather, to my ever honoured 
mother, Susanna Mapletoft, the same year in which I was born (1631). 
And I desire my son, to whom I do give it, with the Great Concordance, 
and other story books, that it may be preserved in the family as long as 
may be. 

" JOHN MAPLETOFT, Jan. 23, 1715." 

2 Second Work.'] A copy of this, dated 1637, is also in the British Museum, 
to which it came with the old Royal Library. It is also in old green morocco 
binding, ornamented with lines of gold. The British Museum also possesses, 
from the same source, a work by the Ferrars family not hitherto described, 
it is in two parts, entitled Acta Apostolorum elegantiss. monochromatis delineata. 
The Revelation of St. John the Divine. In a large folio volume, in old green 
morocco, richly gilt, of a different pattern from either of the preceding. 


of them is preserved intire, in such a manner as they may easily be read 
severally and distinctly, from first to last. Also there are three sundry kinds 
of tables : theirs/ summarily declaring the several heads and chapters, into 
which this historical collection is divided ; the second specifying what passages 
are related in the aforesaid books of Kings and Chronicles, and what are 
jointly related by them both, as also in what heads and chapters in the col- 
lection they may be found ; the third shewing where every chapter of the 
texts themselves, and every part of them may be very readily found in this 

N. There is an intention, and preparation making (if the times permit) to 
make a second piece in this kind : but to illustrate it in a more pleasant and 
profitable way, and manner, than this first work was done. The good Lord 
say Amen to it ! 



The actions, doctrines and other passages touching our Lord and Saviour 
Jesus Christ, as they are related by the Four Evangelists; harmonically, 
symmetrically, and collaterally placed, in four languages, English, Latin, 
French, Italian, reduced into one complete body of history; wherein that 
which is severally related by them, is digested into order, and that which is 
jointly related by all or any of them, is first extracted into one narration, by 
way of composition ; secondly, brought into one clear context, by the way of 
collection : to which are, in all the pages of the book, added sundry of the best 
pictures that could be gotten, expressing the facts themselves, or their types, 
figures, or other matters appertaining thereunto; done at Little Gidding, 
anno 1640. 


The Gospel of our blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, according to 
the holy Evangelists, in eight several languages, Hebrew, Greek, Latin, 
French, Spanish, High Dutch, Saxon and Welsh, all interpreted with Latin 
or English, word for word, interlineally placed, and at one view to be seen 
and read ; so done and contrived for the use and benefit of all such as are 
desirous with sureness, ease, speed and pleasure, to attain to the knowledge 
of these languages : likewise it may be of very good help to strangers that 
may desire to learn the English tongue. 


Novum Testamentum Domini et Salvatoris Nostri Jesu Christi viginti 
quatuor linguis expressum, vid. 

1. Hebraice. 7. Anglo-Saxonice. 

2. Greece. 8. Muscovitire. 

3. Syriace. 9. Cambro-Britannice. 

4. Arabice. 10. Belgice. 

5. jEthiopice. 11. Suedice. 

6. Latine. 12. Hibernice. 


13. Germanice. 19. Gallice. 

14. Polonice. 20. Ttalice. 

15. Danice. 21. Hispanice. 

16. Bohemice. 22. Cantabrice. 

17. Hungarice. 23. Lusitanice. 

18. Anglice. 24. Sclavonice. 

Unaquaeque lingua proprio suo charactere scripta, et omnes Harmonice et 
Symmetrice collocate, etiamque Syriaca literis et vocalibus Hebraicis scripta, 
cum interlineari Latina interpretatione insuper adjecta. 


Sacrosanctum S. Johannis Evangelium in totidem linguis quot sunt 
capita, vid. 

Caput Caput 

1. jEthiopice. 12. Germanice. 

2. Greece. 13. Hungarice. 

3. Syriace. 14. Gallice. 

4. Arabice. 15. Italice. 

5. Latine. 16. Hispanice. 

6. Saxonice. 17. Suedice. 

7. Hebraice. 18. Danice. 

8. Anglice. 19. Polonice. 

9. Cambro-Britannice. 20. Belgice. 

10. Bohemice. 21. Hibernice et Muscovitice. 

11. Cantabrice. 

Et unaqueeque lingua per interlinearem Latinam interpretationem ad 
verbum redditam et positam, explicata. 

Some Observations that happened upon these forenamed Works, done 
at Gidding, and the acceptation of them by the King and 

1. Upon the first work. 

His sacred majesty, anno 1631, having heard of some rare 
contrivements, as he was pleased to term them, of books done at 
Little Gidding in Huntingdonshire, in an unusual way and manner, 
for their own private uses and employments; and that the 
younger sort learned them without book, and hourly made repeti- 
tion of some part of them, that so both their hands and minds 
might be partakers in what was good and useful : it so happened 
that being at Apthorpe * at the earl of Westmoreland's house, in 

3 At Apthorpe.'] In Northamptonshire. 


his progress, about seven miles off Gidding ; he sent a gentleman 
of his court, well loved of him, to Gidding ; who came and de- 
clared, that the king his master desired that there might be sent 
by him A BOOK, but he knew not the name of it, that was made 
at Gidding, and somewhat of it every hour repeated by them. 
The tidings were much unexpected, and Nicholas Ferrar at 
London. Leave was craved, that the deferring of the sending of 
it might be respited one week, and the king might be informed, 
that the book was wholly unfitting every way for a king^s eye : 
and those that had given him any notice of such a thing had 
much misinformed his majesty ; and when he should see it, he 
would con them no thanks 4 , the book being made only for the 
young people in the family. But all excuses could not satisfy 
this gentleman. He said if we enforced him to go without it, 
he knew he should be again sent for it that night ; and no nays 
he would have. So necessity enforced the delivery; and the 
gentleman seemed greatly contented ; took the book, saying not 
his man, but himself would carry it : he knew it would be an 
acceptable service to his master ; and engaged his faith, that at 
the king^s departure from Apthorpe, he would bring it again. 
But a quarter of a year past. Then came the gentleman again ; 
but brought no book ; but after much compliment said, the king 
so liked the work itself, and the contrivement of it in all kinds, 
that there had not a day passed, but the king, in the midst of all 
his progress and sports, spent one hour in the perusing of it : 
and that would apparently be seen by the notations he had made 
upon the margins of it with his own hand : and that his master 
would upon no terms part with it, except he brought him a pro- 
mise from the family, that they would make him one for his daily 
use, which he should esteem as a rich jewel. Some months 
after the gentleman, acquainting the king what he had done in 
obedience to his command, brought back the book from London 
to Gidding ; saying, that upon the condition that within the space 
of twelve months the king might have one made him, he was to 
render back that again ; and so with many courtly terms he <]<>- 
I .art 'd, with intimation from Nicholas Ferrar, that his majesty^ 
commands should be obeyed. 

4 He would con them no thanks. ,] So, " Frend Hoggarde, / cun you thanke, 
that you have learned somewhat at Father Latimer'8 Sermons." Robert 
Crowley's Confutation of the Aunswer to the Ballad, called " The Abuse of the 
Blested Sacrament of the Altare." Signat. A 3. b. A.D. 1548. 


The book being opened, there was found, as the gentleman 
had said, the king's notes in many places in the margin ; which 
testified the king's diligent perusal of it. And in one place which 
is not to be forgotten, to the eternal memory of his majesty's 
superlative humility (no small virtue in a king,) having written 
something in one place, he puts it out again very neatly with his 
pen. But that, it seems, not contenting him, he vouchsafes to 
underwrite, " I confess my error: it was well before" (an example 
to all his subjects) "/ was mista&en." 

Before the year came about, such diligence and expedition was 
used, that a book was presented to his majesty, being bound in 
crimson velvet, and richly gilded upon the velvet, a thing not 
usual. The king gratiously with a cheerful countenance received 
it : and after a curious perusal, after having asked many questions 
concerning the work, and the parties that had done it ; said to 
the lord's grace of Canterbury, and divers other lords that stood 
about him, (doctor Cosin being also there, that was his chaplain 
for that month), " Truly my lords, I prize this as a rare and rich 
jewel, and worth a king's acceptance. The substance of it is of 
the best alloy in the world, and ought to be the only desirable 
book. And for the skill, care, cost, used in it, there is no defect, 
but a superlative diligence in all about it. I very much thank 
them all : and it shall be my Vade mecum. How happy a king 
were I, if I had many more such workmen and women in my king- 
dom. God's blessing on their hearts, and painful hands ! I know 
they will receive no reward for it." Then he gave the book to 
the lords to peruse, saying, there are fine pictures in it. The lords 
said, they believed the like book was not in the world to be seen. 
It was a precious gem, and worthy of his cabinet. 

Then said the king to my lord of Canterbury, and to doctor 
Cosin, " What think you ? Will not these good people be willing 
that I put them to a further trouble ? I find their ability and art 
is excellent : and why should I doubt of their condescension to 
my desire 2" " Your majesty need not," replied the archbishop ; 
and doctor Cosin seconded him. " We know they will fulfill 
your commands in all things in their powers." " Well," said the 
king, "let me tell you, I often read the books of Kings and 
Chronicles, as is befitting a king: but in many things, I find 
some seeming contradictions ; and one book saith more, and the 
other less, in many circumstances the latter being a supply to the 
former. Now I seeing this judicious and well- contrived book 


of the Four Evangelists, I gladly would have these skilful persons 
to make me another book that might so be ordered, that I might 
read these stories of Kings and Chronicles so interwoven by 
them, as if one pen had written the whole books ; and to make it 
a complete history altogether : yet so again ordering the matter, 
that I may also read them severally and apart, if I would. I 
have often spoken to many of my chaplains about this thing ; 
but they have excused themselves (from it) as a difficult work, 
and (they) not skilful in that way." " Let your majesty rest 
contented, and doubt not, but with the best expedition that can 
be, the thing shall be done as you intimate. Doctor Cosin shall 
acquaint them speedily with your majesty's pleasure." 

So intimation was given them at Gidding of this thing : and 
they with all care and diligence instantly set about it. And thus 
was this second work, (as you see in the insuing title,) begun 
and finished in a year's time. And what happened in the pre- 
senting and acceptation of it, you shall find by the insuing dis- 
course that follows upon it. 

THE SECOND WOIIK done at Little Gidding, whereof the title is 
as you see, was in the time of twelve months finished ; and the 
proceedings that happened thereupon, here insueth. 

The king's most excellent majesty having in the interim often 
demanded when the book would be done, saying the time seemed 
long unto him till he saw it : 

It being now sent up to London, my lord of Canterbury under- 
standing so much by Dr. Cosin and one Mr. Ramsay, that had 
married one of the daughters of the family, he being a minister, 
desired it might be brought such a day to court. My lord took 
it, and perused it, and to admiration beheld it, saying, u Here is 
a master-piece indeed in all kinds, inside and outside, all per- 
formed by those judicious heads, and active hands of Little 
Gidding. Sure these, and the like words they intend, deserve to 
make it alter its name from Parva to Magna. Come, said he, 
let us go to the king, who, I am sure, will bid us welcome for 
tlis royal present." 1 

At their coming into the room where the king was, he seeing 


my lord of Canterbury to have a stately great book in his two 
hands, presently rose out of his chair where he was sitting, many 
lords then standing round about him : " What," said he, " shall 
I now enjoy that rich jewel I have thus long desired 1 Have you 
my lord, brought me my book?" " Yea sir," replied the bishop 
of Canterbury. " Give it me ; give it me," said the king. " Your 
expectations, sir," said he, "are not only performed, but out of 
doubt many ways surpassed. For my own part, I wonder at the 
work, and all the parts of it." " Let me have it ;" said the king. 
So smiling he took it, and carried it to the table. 

Then first seriously viewing the outside of the book, being 
bound curiously in purple velvet, and that also most artificially 
gilt upon the velvet in an extraordinary manner, he said, " My 
lords, the outside thus glorious, what think you will be the inside 
and matter of it ?" Then untying the stately string, he opening 
it read the frontispiece and contents of the book : then turning 
to my lord of Canterbury, he said, " You have given me a right 
character of the work : truly it passeth what I could have wished : 
and what I think none but those heads and hands in my kingdom, 
can do the like again." And so he began to view it leaf by leaf, 
and turned it all over very diligently, observing the form and con- 
trivement of it. Then looking upon his lords, that had their eyes 
also fixed upon it, he said, " My lords, this, this is a jewel in all 
respects, to be continually worn on a king's breast, and in his 
heart." And then he shewed them the fair orderly contrivement 
of the joint books of Kings and Chronicles, thus united together 
in one history, "as if written," said he, "by one man's pen." 
And so, many words passed about it, between the lords and the 
king, they extolling it as an excellent piece. " Well," said the 
king, " I will not part with this diamond, for all those in rny 
Jewel-house. For it is so delightful to me : and I know the vir- 
tues of it will pass all the precious stones in the world. It is a 
most rare crystall glass, and most useful, and needful, and profit- 
able for me and all kings. It shews and represents to the life, 
God's exceeding high and rich mercies, to all pious and virtuous 
kings, and likewise his severe justice to all ill and bad. What 
then more profitable to us all, or more needful? It shall, I 
assure you, be my companion in the day time : and the sweetest 
perfumed bags that can lie under my head in the night. Truly I 
am very much taken with it at all times ; but more, it being thus 
comprised in a full pleasant history. My lord of Canterbury, I 



now perceive that these good people at Gidding can do more 
works in this kind, than this. Let them have my hearty thanks 
returned. I know they look for none, neither will they receive 
any reward. Yet let them know, as occasion shall be, I will not 
forget them : and God bless them in their good intentions ! " And 
so after some more talk the lords had of Gidding, the king took 
up the book, and went away with it in his arms. 

Some while after, doctor Cosin gave notice, that the king, the 
more he perused both books given him, the more he liked them ; 
and had conference with him about the printing of them, that, as 
he said, " all his people might have the benefit of them." And 
doctor Cosin told the king, it was a kingly motion, and by his 
majesty's favour, they should be put out, as at his command, and 
the latter as done by his directions. 

N. It is to be known, that these works were so done as if they 
had been printed the ordinary way ; as most that saw them did 
think so. But it was in another kind done; though all was 
printed indeed, and not written, as some may conceive at the 
reading of the titles of the books. 

THE THIRD WORK was occasioned and effected upon a letter 
sent to Gidding from a person of honour, that the prince, having 
seen the king his father's book, that was first of all presented 
him, of the Concordance of the Four Evangelists, &c. would have 
fain begged it of the king ; but he told him, he might not part 
with that rich jewel, for he daily made use of it ; but if he desired 
one, he made no question, but the same heart and hands that 
framed his, would fit him also with one for his use; and 
hoped he would make good use of it, for it was the book of 
books, &c. 

Upon the intimation given of the prince's desire, though Mr. 
Nicholas Ferrar, senior, was then with God, yet his young 
nephew, that bare his name, whom his uncle entirely loved, (not 
permitting him to be any where brought up but at Gidding. and 
under his own eye) having seen all the former works done in the 
house; his beloved kinswomen, that were the handy-work mis- 
tresses of the former, were also most willing to lay to their help- 


ing assistances; so the young youth, having attained to the 
knowledge of many languages (as you shall hear hereafter, being 
a study that his wise, judicious uncle, Nicholas Ferrar, had put 
him upon, finding him every way fitted naturally for such know- 
ledge,) they laying their heads together, thought a concordance 
of four several languages would be most useful, and beneficial, 
and pleasant to the young prince's disposition ; and so, in the 
name of God, after all materials were provided and ready, they 
uniting their heads and hands lovingly together, setting apart so 
many hours in the fore-noons, and so many in the afternoons, as 
their other exercises and occasions permitted, constantly met in 
a long fair spacious room, which they named the Concordance 
Chamber, wherein were large tables round the sides of the walls, 
placed for their better conveniency and contrivement of their 
works of this and the like kind ; and therein also were placed 
two very large and great presses, which were turned with iron 
bars, for the effecting of their designs. 

And now we are in the Concordance room (which was all 
coloured over with green pleasant colour varnished, for the more 
pleasure to their eyes, and a chimney in it for more warmth, as 
occasion served,) let me here relate, that each person of the 
family, and some other good friends of their kindred, gave each 
their sentence, which should be written round the upper part of 
the walls of the room ; that so when they entered the chamber, 
or at any time looked up from the walls, these sentences pre- 
sented themselves to their eyes. As you entered in at the door 
into the room, over your head at that end was written that sen- 
tence of Scripture, that their uncle, of blessed memory, did fre- 
quently use upon several occasions. 

At the upper end was written high upon the wall 

" Glory le to God on High, 
Peace on Earth, Good will toward Men" 

^Prosper thou, Lord, the work of our hands. 
prosper thou our handy works" 

And under it, (on each side of that upper window,) on the one 
side was written : 

" Thou art too delicate, brother, if thou desirest to reign 
both here with the world, and hereafter to reign with Christ in 


And on the other side of the window ; 

" Innocency is never better lodged than at the Sign of Labour" 
And then on both sides of the walls there are written, 

" Love not sleep, least thou come to poverty. 

Open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread." 

" He that spendeih his time " 

" Seest thou a man diligent in his business, Jte shall stand before 

" The industrious man hath no leisure to sin ; and the idle man 
hath no power to avoid sin." 

THIS THIRD WORK thus finished, it was upon consultation 
thought fitting, that it should not go single and alone, but to stay 
awhile till Nicholas Ferrar, junior, had finished and ordered four 
other pieces of works, being businesses of many and several lan- 
guages, and the titles of them are those four succeeding frontis- 
pieces, that follow one after the other, as you have seen : the 
Four Evangelists, in such and such languages as is there de- 
scribed, written by his own hand, and so composed by his head 
and industry. 

All these five pieces, that one for the prince, and four for the 
king, being all made ready, they were carried up to London ; but 
in the way they went by Cambridge, and there were shewed to 
some eminent persons, a bishop then present there, and other 
learned scholars (and before that time, also to the bishop of 
Peterborough, and other doctors that there had sight of them). 
All these learned men gave their approbation to the works, and 
no small commendation, as well as admiration, that they were so 
contrived and ordered, for substance and form, by one of those 
tender years. 

Nicholas Ferrar coming to London, as he had directions, ad- 
dressed himself to my lord of Canterbury, from him to receive 
orders how to proceed. Who when he saw the young man, and 
was informed of his errand, by those that conducted him to his 
presence, the young man kneeling down, craving his blessing, and 
kissing his hand, my lord embraced him very lovingly, took him 
up, and after some salutes, he desired a sight of the books ; which 


when he had well seen and perused, he very highly commended 
them in every particular, and said, " These truly are jewels only 
for princes : and your printed one will greatly take the prince, to 
whom I perceive you intend it. So will the other four pieces be 
no less acceptable to the king himself ; and so all things, the form, 
the matter, the writing, will make the king admire them, I know. 
And," said he, '" but that my eyes see the things, I should hardly 
have given credit to my ears, from any relation made of them by 
another. But," said he, "I now find, great is education, when it 
meets with answerable ability, and had its directions from so 
eminent a man, as that counsellor was, that gave the hints and 
rise to all these contrivements before his death." And after 
much discourse he gave Nicholas Ferrar leave to depart. And 
gave directions that next day in the afternoon, being Maundy 
Thursday, Nicholas Ferrar should be in such a room at White 

The bishop came at the time he had appointed to that room, 
where he found Nicholas Ferrar and others waiting his leisure. 
And they perceived he came out of another room where the king 
then was. " Come," said he, " in God's name, follow me, where 
I go ;" and led them into a room, where the king stood by the 
fire, with many nobles attending him. When the king saw the 
archbishop enter the room, he said, " What, have you brought 
with you those rarities and jewels you told me of 2" " Yea, sire," 
replied the bishop, " here is the young gentleman, and his works." 
So the bishop taking him by the hand, led him up to the king. 
He falling down on his knees, the king gave him his hand to kiss, 
bidding him rise up. The box was opened ; and Nicholas Ferrar 
first presented to the king that book made for the prince : who 
taking it from him, looking well on the outside, which was all 
green velvet, stately and richly gilt all over, with great broad 
strings, edged with gold lace, and curiously bound, said, " Here 
is a fine book for Charles indeed ! I hope it will soon make him 
in love with what is within it : for I know it is good." So open- 
ing it, and with much pleasure perusing it, he said merrily to the 
lords, " What think you of it ? For my part, I like it in all 
respects exceeding well ; and find Charles will here have a double 
benefit by the well contrivement of it, not only obtain by the 
daily reading in it a full information of our blessed Saviour's life, 
doctrine, and actions (the chief foundation of Christian religion ;) 
but the knowledge of four languages, A couple of better things 


a prince cannot desire ; nor the world recommend unto him. And 
lo ! here are also store of rare pictures to delight his eye with." 

Then Nicholas Ferrar, the king looking upon him, bowing 
himself to the ground, said, " May it please your sacred majesty, 
this work was undertaken upon the prince's command. But I 
dared not present it to him, till it had your majesty's approbation 
and allowance." " Why so ?" said the king ; " It is an excellent 
thing for him, and will do him much good." " Sir," said Nicholas 
Ferrar, " my learned and religious wise uncle, under whose wings 
I was covered, and had my education from my youth, gave me 
amongst other rules, this one : that I should never give any thing, 
though never so good or fitting, to any person whatever, that had 
a superior over him, without his consent and approbation first 
obtained : as nothing to a son, to a wife, to a servant : for he 
said it was not seemly nor comely so to do. Whereupon, sir, I 
have by the favour of my lord of Canterbury's grace, come to 
present this piece unto your majesty's view, and to beg your good 
leave to carry it to the prince." The king with attention heard 
all, and turning him to the lords, said, " You all hear this wise 
counsel, and you all see the practice of it. I do assure you, it 
doth wonderfully please me. I like the rule well : and it is worthy 
of all our practice. And now you see we all have gained by the 
sight of this rich jewel a third good thing." Then turning him 
to the lord of Canterbury, he said, " Let this young gentleman 
have your letters to the prince to-morrow, to Richmond, and let 
him carry this present. It is a good day you know, and a good 
work would be done upon it." So he gave Nicholas Ferrar the 
book : who carrying it to the box, took out of it a very large 
paper book, which was the FOURTH WORK, and laid it on the table 
before the king. " For whom," said the king, "is this model?" 
" For your majesty's eyes, if you please to honour it so much." 
" And that I will gladly do," said the king, " and never be weary 
of such sights as I know you will offer unto me." 

The king having well perused the title page, beginning, " The 
Gospel of our Lord and Blessed Saviour Jesus Christ, in eight several 
languages, &c" said unto the lords, " You all see, that one good 
thing produceth another. Her< \\v have more and moiv r;u 
from print now to pen. These are fair hands \\vll written, and as 
well composed." Then replied the lord of Canterbury, "when 
your majesty hath seen all, yon \\iil have more and more cause to 
admire." M What !" said tin- kinj, u is it possible- we shall !><- 


hold yet more rarities ?" "Then," said the bishop to Nicholas 
Ferrar, " reach the other piece that is in the box :" and this we 
call the FIFTH WORK, the title being Novum Testamentum, &c. in 
viginti quatuor linguis, &c. The king opening the book said, 
" Better and better. This is the largest and fairest paper that 
ever I saw." Then, reading the title page, he said, " What is 
this ? What have we here ? The incomparablest book this will 
be, as ever eye beheld. My lords, come, look well upon it. This 
finished must be the emperor of all books. It is the crown of all 
works. It is an admirable master-piece. The world cannot 
match it. I believe you are all of my opinion. The lords all 
seconded the king, and each spake his mind of it. " I observe 
two things amongst others," said the king, " very remarkable, if 
not admirable. The first is, how it is possible, that a young man 
of twenty-one years of age," (for he had asked the lord of Can- 
terbury before, how old Nicholas Ferrar was) " should ever attain 
to the understanding and knowledge of more languages, than he 
is of years ; and to have the courage to venture upon such an 
Atlas work, or Hercules labour. The other is also of high com- 
mendation, to see him write so many several languages, so well as 
these are, each in its proper character. Sure so few years had 
been well spent, some men might think, to have attained only to 
the writing thus fairly of these twenty-four languages." All the 
lords replied, his majesty had judged right ; and said, except they 
had seen as they did, the young gentleman there, and the book 
itself, all the world should not have persuaded them to the belief 
of it. And so much discourse passed upon the business to and 
fro, and many questions demanded and answered, here, too long to 

" Well," said the king to my lord of Canterbury, " there is 
one thing yet that I would be fully satisfied in, and see the proof 
and real demonstration of it, over and above what I have yet 
seen. I do really believe and know, that these persons here 
would not present this unto me, or any thing else, that were not 
full of truth. I say, I no way doubt of all I have seen : yet if 
I may be resolved in one question, that I shall demand, it will 
wonderfully please me. The thing, my lord, is this. Let me, if 
it be possible, have more than this affirmation, by word and pen 
thus shewed me, that he understands all these several languages, 
and can English them, word for word, properly. I know yourself, 


my lord, and many other men in my court, can try and prove him 
in many of them ; but where shall I find men to try and pose 
him in all the others, that are so unusual and scarce known 2" My 
lord of Canterbury, being somewhat at a stand, replied, " Sir, 
you need not be so scrupulous, but be confident that he can and 
doth understand all of them :" and then looking upon Nicholas 
Ferrar, to see what he could say for himself in this kind ; who all 
the while stood silent attending the end and upshot of the king's 
demands ; then bowing himself to the ground at his majesty's feet, 
he spake in this manner and effect. " May it please your sacred 
majesty, the difficulty you in your great wisdom have propounded 
so judiciously, to have a present proof given you, that I understand 
all these several twenty-four languages, and can translate them 
into English or Latin, is that which I conceived your majesty 
would put me upon, when you should see that which you have 
done ; and to that intent I now brought with me, what will and 
may fully satisfy your majesty, as it was my part to do, and to 
prepare for it in that kind, as you require." " Let us then now 
see it," said the king. Now you are to know that this proof-book 
Nicholas Ferrar had of purpose concealed it, from my lord of 
Canterbury, not shewing it him, when he at first saw the rest of 
them. So Nicholas Ferrar presently stepped to the box, it being 
covered under papers at the bottom of it, and came and gave it 
into the king's hands. The king opening it, and smiling, reading 
the title page of it, which was this, Sacrosanctum Sancti Johannis 
Evangelium, in totidem Linguis quot sunt Capita, &c. " I now 
see I shall be fully contented ;" and so turning the book all over, 
leaf by leaf, and perusing it, seeing each chapter interpreted in 
each language, word for word with English or Latin, he called 
my lord of Canterbury to the table, who all this while stood 
somewhat in doubt what this proof would be ; " Lo ! here is an 
ample proof and manifestation, wittily contrived ; and I am fully 
satisfied in all things. He could never have done this, but that 
he is a master of them all. And I am the more glad I raised the 
doubt ; but much more that he hath thus undeniably made a full 
proof of his rare abilities in every kind. What say you to it, my 
lord?" Who replied, it was far beyond what he should IIUM- 
thought of ; and was right glad to see it. So many questions 
were asked and answered to the king's good liking. Tlu- kinr 
turning to the rest of the lords, who also took the book and \\T<- 


admiring at it, and spake of it in no small way of commendation, 
said, " We have spent part of our Maimday Thursday to good 
purpose, have we not, my lords, think your 1 They all replied 
they had seen those good things and rarities, that they never did 
before, nor should see the like they believed again for the future. 
" It is very rightly said," said the king. So looking upon Nicho- 
las Ferrar he willed him, that he should go the next morning to 
Richmond, and carry the prince the book made for hiui. " And 
after the holiday," said he, " return to my Lord of Canterbury ; 
and then you shall know my good approbation of yourself and 
all you have done ; and he shall signify to you my will and plea- 
sure, what I will have you to do, and where you are to go." 

So dismissing him with a cheerful royal look, the king said to 
my lord of Canterbury, " Alas ! what pity is it, that this youth 
hath not his speech, altogether so ready as his pen, and great 
understanding is." For the king had observed, that sometimes 
at the first bringing out his words, he would make a small pause ; 
but once having begun, he spake readily and roundly, as other 
men did. " Sir," said my lord of Canterbury, " I conceive that 
small impediment in his tongue hath been very happy for him." 
"How can you, my lord, make that good?" " Sir," said he, 
" out of doubt, the small defect in that one tongue hath gained, 
by the directions of that learned and wise uncle of his, that 
directed him to the study of all these languages, (as finding his 
great abilities of wit, memory, and industry,) the attaining of 
them, and producing these and the like rare works, that you see, 
done by him to admiration. So oftentimes God, in his great 
wisdom and love, turns those things, we account our prejudice, 
to our greatest happiness, if with pleasure and chearfulness we 
undergo them, and to his own further glory. So that neither he 
nor his parents have cause to grieve at that small defect he hath 
in his one tongue, that by it hath gained so many more, that 
make him more eminent, than that one could have done. For 
certainly, sir, so many other abilities that are united in the young 
man, had taken and put him upon some other studies, than this 
of languages, if this small imperfection had not accompanied it : 
and instead of one mother tongue, he hath gained twenty-four ; 
a full recompence I take it to be." " Well," said the king, " you 
have somewhat to the purpose, my lord." Then said my lord of 
Holland, " He should do well to carry always in his mouth some 
small pebble stones, that would (help) him much." " Nay, nay," 


said the king, " I have tried that 5 , but it helps not. I will tell 
him the best and surest way is to take good deliberation at first, 
and not to be too sudden in speech. And let him also learn to 
sing, that will do well." Then said one of the lords to Nicholas 
Ferrar, " Do you not learn to sing, and music also ?" He replied 
he did. So humble reverence done, Nicholas Ferrar going 
away, my lord of Canterbury stepped to Nicholas Ferrar and 
told him, he must not fail to come to Lambeth, and call 
for his letter in the morning, for bishop Duppa, the prince's 

This was done next morning ; and so in a coach with four 
horses, Nicholas Ferrar went to Richmond, with some other com- 
pany of his friends. Coming to Richmond, the bishop's secretary 
acquainted his lord, of a letter sent to him by the lord of Canter- 
bury. The bishop was then with the prince, who coming from 
him, Nicholas Ferrar delivered him the letter. The contents 
read, he imbraced Nicholas Ferrar, who kneeled down to crave 
his blessing, and kiss his hands. Nicholas Ferrar was called for 
to come in to the prince, who gave him his hand to kiss. He 
presented the book unto him. The prince hastily opened it, say- 
ing, " Here's a gallant outside :" gave it then to the bishop : he 
read the title-page and frontis-piece. Then the prince took it, 
and turning it all over, leaf by leaf, said, " Better and better." 
The courtiers that stood about him, demanded how he liked that 
rare piece. " Well, well, very," said he. " It pleaseth me exceed- 
ingly ; and I wish daily to read in it." So many questions were 
asked and answered. And the little duke of York, having also 
seen the book, and fine pictures in it, came to Nicholas Ferrar, 
and said unto him, " Will you not make me also such another 

5 / have tried that.] The king here alludes to the imperfections of his own 
utterance : respecting which an interesting circumstance is recorded by sir 
Philip Warwick. He is speaking of a critical season; the three days of 
Charles's appearance on his trial before the regicides. 

" The king's deportment was very majestic and steady ; and though his 
tongue usually hesitated yet it was free at this time ; for he was never dis- 
composed in mind." Memoirs, p. 339. 

His elder brother, prince Henry, had suffered under a similar imperfection. 

" His speech," says sir Charles Cornwallis, treasurer of his household, 
" was slow and somewhat impedimented. . . . Oftentimes he would say of 
himself, that he had the most unserviceahle tongue of any man living." Dis- 
course of the most illustrious prince Henry, &c. Harleian Miscellany, vol. iv. 
p. 339, 40. 


fine book ? I pray you do it." Nicholas Ferrar replied, his grace 
should not fail to have one made for him also. But said the 
duke, " How long will it be before I have it?" " With all good 
speed," said Nicholas Ferrar. " But how long time will that be ? 
I pray tell the gentle-women at Gidding, I will heartily thank 
them, if they will dispatch it." (For he had heard Nicholas 
Ferrar tell the prince, who questioned with him, who bound the 
book so finely, and made it so neatly and stately, and had laid on 
all the pictures so curiously ; that it was done by the art and 
hands of his kins- women at Gidding.) All the courtiers standing 
by, heartily laughed to see the duke's earnestness, who would 
have no nay ; but a promise speedily to have one made for him 6 , 
like his brother's. The prince at last went to dinner, expressing 
much joy at his book. 

The bishop took Nicholas Ferrar by the hand, and with great 
demonstration of favour led him into a room, where divers young 
lords were, the duke of Buckingham and others, who sitting down 
to dinner, the bishop placed Nicholas Ferrar by the table at his 
side. The bishop demanded many questions at table concerning 
Gidding, to which he received satisfaction ; saying, my lord of 
Canterbury's letters had informed him of what had passed before 
the king at White Hall ; and of the rare pieces which were 
shewed the king, whereof he said he hoped one day to have the 
happiness to see them ; and said, " This present given the prince 
was very acceptable, and he made no question but the prince would 
receive not only much pleasure in it, but great good by it in every 

After dinner ended, and other courtiers come to talk with 
Nicholas Ferrar, the bishop departed the room, and not long 
after came in again ; took Nicholas Ferrar by the hand, and car- 
ried him into a room, where the prince was, the duke, and divers 
court ladies looking upon the book. The bishop after a while 
told the prince what books were presented to the king his father, 
at White Hall. The prince demanded to see them also : but the 
bishop said they were left there. " Ah," said he, "I would you 
had brought them, that I might also have seen those rare things." 
So after many questions demanded and answered, it growing late, 
Nicholas Ferrar craved leave to depart; and humbly bowing 

6 One made for him.'] In the margin it is added, " The book which was 
made and printed for the duke never had opportunity to be presented to his 
grace. It is yet still at Gidding." 


himself to the prince, the prince rose up, and came towards him, 
and moving his hat, the bishop standing by him, said, u I am 
much beholden to you, for the jewel you have given rne, and for 
the contrivement of it ; and to the Gidding gentlewomen, that 
have taken so much pains about it, to make it so curious a piece." 
Then putting his hand into his pocket, he pulled out a handful of 
twenty shillings pieces of gold, saying (Nicholas Ferrar stepping 
back), " Nay, I do not give you this as any reward in recompence 
of your book, for I esteem it every way above much gold ; and 
prize it at a far greater rate. Only you shall take this as a pre- 
sent testimony of my acceptance of it, and my esteem of you. I 
shall study how I may in the future let all know how much I 
deem of your worth, and the book :" and so gave him his handful 
of gold. And so Nicholas Ferrar departing, divers courtiers 
would needs accompany him to his coach, and the bishop down 
stairs. And so, with great demonstration of much civility they 
parted, the bishop willing his secretary to accompany him to the 

Saturday morning repair was made to the bishop of Canterbury, 
to let him know what had passed at Richmond ; for so he had 
given order ; who said he much longed to know what entertain- 
ment was given to the book, and person. He liked all well that 
passed, and said he was right glad, that things went as he hoped ; 
and should acquaint the king with all. Then taking Nicholas 
Ferrar's father aside, he said, " Let your care now cease for your 
hopeful son, or for his future preferment, or estate, or present 
maintenance. God hath so inclined the king's heart, and his 
liking to your son, and the gifts God hath indued him with ; :md 
having been informed of his virtuous, pious education, and singular 
industry and Christian deportment, and of his sober inclination, 
that he will take him from you into his own protection and car--. 
and make him his scholar and servant ; and hath given me order, 
that after the holidays being past, I should send him to Oxford ; 
and that there he shall be maintained in all things needful for 
him at the king's proper charge; and shall not (need) what he 
can desire, to further him in the prosecution of these works he 
hath begun in matter of lan^ua^es : and what help of books, or 
h-ads, or hands he shall require, he shall not be unfurnished with ; 
for the king would have this work of the New Te>tament. in 
t \\enty-fnur lan^uaiM'-. t< be accomplished by his care andas>i>t 
ance ; and to have the help of all the learned men that can 


had, to that end. Assure yourself he shall want nothing. In a 
word the king is greatly in love with him : and you will, and 
have cause to bless and praise God for such a son." So John 
Ferrar being ravished with joy, in all humble manner gave thanks 
to my lord's grace. And they returning to Nicholas Ferrar, my 
lord embraced him, and gave him his benediction. Nicholas 
Ferrar kneeling down, took the bishop by the hand, and kissed 
it. He took him up in his arms, and laid his hand to his cheek, 
and earnestly besought God Almighty to bless him, and increase 
all graces in him, and fit him every day more and more for an 
instrument of his glory here upon earth, and a saint in heaven ; 
" which," said he, " is the only happiness that can be desired, 
and ought to be our chief end in all our actions. God bless you ! 
God bless you ! I have told your father, what is to be done for 
you, after the holidays. God will provide for you, better than 
your father can: God bless you! and keep you!" So they 
parted from his grace. 

But he never saw him more ! for within a few days after 7 , 
Nicholas Ferrar fell ill : and on Easter day he was desirous, 
being next morning (having found himself not well the day 
before) to receive the communion at Paul's, whither he went 
early in the morning, and communicated ; and returning home, 
had little appetite to his dinner, eating little or nothing. He 
went yet to a sermon in the afternoon ; but at night grew some- 
what worse. And on Monday morning, his father with all care 
and diligence went to a learned physician, who came and visited 
him, and gave him what he thought fitting ; but he grew worse 
and worse. Then was another physician joined to the first. 
They consulted, and prescribed things for him, but he mended 
not; but with great patience and chearfulness did bear his 
sickness, and was very comfortable in it to all that came to visit 
him, wholly referring himself to God's good will and pleasure ; 
only telling his friends, and the bishop of Peterborough, doctor 
Towers, that loved him dearly, and came to visit him twice in 
that short time, that he was no way troubled to die, and to go to 
heaven, where he knew was only peace and quiet and joys per- 
manent, whereas all things in the world were but trouble and 
vexation : and death must be the end of all men ; and he that 
went soonest to heaven, was the happiest man. The bishop 

7 A few days after.'] " Easter-Eve." Margin of the manuscript. 


would say, when he went away, and had a long time talked with 
him, that Nicholas Ferrar was better prepared to die than he, 
and was a true child of God : and could comfort himself in God, 
without directions from him, or others : that his pious education 
under his pious uncle of blessed memory, his old and dear friend, 
was now shewed forth in these his so young years, that they had 
taken mighty root downward, and in his soul, and now sprang up 
with not only leaves and fair blossoms, but with good and ripe 
fruit of heavenly matters. It joyed his heart to see him so dis- 
posed to God-ward, and to so willingly leave the world, and the 
late testimonies of worth, that he had received from the b< 
the land. That sure he was too good longer to stay here. God 
would take him to heaven ; and willed his father to prepare for 
his departure ; and to take it with all thankfulness to God ; 
and not look what himself he might think had here lost on 
earth, but to that crown which his good son, by the mercies 
of God, and merits of his Saviour, he was persuaded would 
soon enjoy in heaven. " He is too good ; he is too good," 
said he, "to live longer in these ill approaching times. For 
there is much fear now that the glory of church and state is at 
the highest/ 1 For then tumults began : and the bishop of 
Canterbury's house at Lambeth 8 , was one night assaulted by a 
rabble of lewd people ; which when Nicholas Ferrar was told one 
morning, as he lay in his sick bed, " Alas ! alas ! " said he, " God 
help his church, and poor England ! I now fear indeed, what 
my dear uncle said before he died, is at hand, that evil days were 
coming, and happy were they that went to heaven before they 
came. Can or will the insolency of such a rabble be unpunished ? 
It is high time that supreme authority take care of these growing 
evils. God amend all ! Truly, truly, it troubles me/' And wlu-n 
at other times some friend would say to him. " Good cousin, 
are you not grieved to leave this world ; you are now so young, 
and in the flower of your youth and hopes ?" He would cheerfully 
answer, " No, truly ; I leave all to God's good will and pleasure, 
that is my best father, and knoweth what is best for me. Alas ! I 
am too young to be mine own judge, what is best for me, to die 

8 At Lambeth.'] In the church-warden's accounts of the parish of Lamlu-th 
in this year, 1640, is the following entry : 

" May 8th, Paide for trayning when the mutinie was in Lambeth 

againest the archbishopp 1 o <>." 


or live ; but let all be, as God's will is. If I live, I desire it may 
be to his further glory, and mine own soul's good, and the 
comfort and service, that I intend to be to my father, that loves 
me so dearly, and in his old age to be his servant. If I die, I 
hope my father will submit all to God's will and pleasure, and 
rejoice at my happiness in heaven, where by the merits of my 
blessed Lord and Saviour, I know I shall go out of this wretched 
life." In this manner, and upon the visits of friends, he would 
discourse ; and the bishop came to him two days before he 
died, and found him most cheerful to die, and to be with God, as 
he would say to him ; who gave him absolution, and with many 
tears departed, saying to his father, " God give you consolation ; 
and prepare yourself to part with your good son. He will, in a 
few hours, I think, go to a better world : for he is no way for 
this, that I see, by his body and by his soul. Be of good comfort ; 
you give him but again to him, that gave him you for a season." 
And in two days after, God took him away ; who died praying 
and calling upon God, " Lord Jesus receive my soul ! Lord 
receive it!" Amen. 

This following EPITAPH will more at large inform the reader 
concerning Nicholas Ferrar junior, his life and death, briefly thus 
expressed by a friend of his, Mr. Mark Frank, once fellow of 
Pembroke Hall in Cambridge. 


quisquis es 

f vel sortis humanae "| 

quern < vel elusse spei > miseret, 

[_ vel ereptse virtutis J 
Siste te paulum ad hoc lachrymarum monumentum, 

Sepulchrum Nicolai 
generosse Ferrarorum families hseredis ; 

piissimi illius Nicolai, 

quern ipse orbis admiratur 

tanquam unicum integree virtutis domicilium, 

Charissimi nepotis : 
Londini, si patriam quseris, oriundi, 
Geddingce Parva, juxta Venantodunum, educati. 

Juvenis nimirum 
qui, inter privatas illas solitudines, 

Stupenda sua indole actus 
Ipsum sibi Academiam habuit. 


Qui ad vicesimam tertiam linguara 
vix tutorem habuit, vix indiguit, 

vix annos petiit ; 
Et tamen annorum numerum linguis duabiis 

superavit : 
tngenio quam annis major. 

iGrammatica, Necessitati, 
Historia, Otio, 
Philosophia, Studio, I f .. 
Mathematica, Voluptati, ' 
Musica, Pietati, 
Theologia, Praxi, 


eleganti, admiranda potius industria 

in sacris concinnandis Harmon iis 

(quibus ne verbum aut superesse 

aut deesse Evangelistis ostenditur) 

Regi et Aulae cognitus 
Et doctrinae simul et religionis specimen dedit. 

f Precibua "I 
Qui < Jejuniis > crebris, 


f Precibus "1 
li < Jejuniis > 
I Vigiliis J 

Abstiiientia perpetua 

vel a primo decennio Deo inserviit 

Familiae suae et exemplum, et solatium pietatis ; 

summae erga parentes obedientiae, 

singularis erga amicos amicitiae, 

eximiae erga omnes humanitatis, 

profusae erga pauperes benignitatis, 

Verbis, Veste, Vita, sobrius, modestus, humilimus, 

C ParentumVota 1 

Qui in omnibus \ Amicorum Spem f longe post se reliquit. 
* Omnium Fidem ^ 

Nee hie stetit ; 

dum majora adhuc anhelans 

nullum studiis suis statuerat 

nisi Universae Naturae terminum. 

Sed Natura praepropere terminum posuit 

ne deesset tandem velocissimo ingenio 

quod evolveret. 

Libentissimi hie assensit 

ut mens, nondum satiata scientiis 

inveniret in Deo quod in terris non potuit. 

Inde est 

Amicorum dolori, reipublicae literariae damno, 
Spei humanse confusioni, gloriae tamen suap 

quod hinc abiit 
vel ad Doctorum vel Virginum Chorum, 



Regis Carol! XVI . 
.Etatis s\i3d XXI . 

Christ! MDCXL 

Die Maii XIX . 

There was found amongst other papers in his study this follow- 
ing; in this manner, that all might be printed in one book 
together, at one view to be seen, in two pages of the book, as it 
opened, twenty-five on one side, twenty-five on the other. 

Novum Domini Nostri Jesu Christ! 



1. Hebraica. 26. Anglica. 

2. Syriaca. 27. Saxonica. 

3. Aj-abica. 28. Italica. 

4. Chaldaica. 29. Gallica. 

5. ^Ethiopica. 30. Hispanica. 

6. Samaritanica. 31. Belgica. 

7. Armenica. 32. Gothica. 

8. Cophtica. 33. Vandalica. 

9. Sclavonica. 34. Estonica. 

10. Moscovitica. 35. Prutenica. 

11. Grseca. 36. Jazigica. 

12. Latina. 37. Illyrica. 

13. Carabro-Britannica. 38. Epirotica. 

14. Hibernica. 39. Persica. 

15. Monica. 40. Georgiana. 

16. Hungarica. 41. Turcica. 

17. Cantabrica. 42. Tartarica. 

18. Cauchica. 43. Jacobitica. 

19. Wallaccica. 44. Indica orientali. 

20. Rhaetica. 45. Japonica. 

21. Islandica. 46. Danica. 

22. Swedica. 47. Polonica. 

23. Finennica. 48. Bohemica. 

24. Livonica. 49. Lusatica. 

25. Germanica. 50. Indica Occident, vel Americana. 

This by the help of God I intend to effect: and also to translate the 
Church Catechism into these languages; so likewise the 117 psalm, 
" Praise the Lord all ye heathens : praise him all ye nations," and pre- 
sent them to the king, that he may print them, and send them to all 
nations, &c. 

VOL. IV. Jl 



The whole law of God, as it is delivered in the five books of Moses, 
methodically distributed into three great classes, moral, ceremonial, political. 
And each of these again subdivided into several heads as the variety of 
matter requires ; wherein each particular subject dispersedly related in the 
forenamed books, is reduced to the proper head and place whereunto it 
belongeth. Containing in all three hundred thirty-three heads : also every 
head of the political law is reduced to that precept of the moral law, to which 
it properly belongs ; likewise there are sundry treatises, shewing in what, 
and how, divers of the ceremonial laws were shadows and types of the 
Messiah that was to come. And also in what Adam, Abel, Noah, Abram, 
Isaac, Joseph, Moses, Aaron, Joshua, Gideon, Jephtha, Samson, David, 
Solomon and his Temple, Elisha, Job, Daniel, Jonah, the pillar fire, the Red 
Sea, the rock, and manna, were all figures of our Lord and blessed Saviour 
J. Christ. 

With an harmony of all the prophets, foretelling the birth, life, and death 
of Jesus Christ that was to come ; to confirm the Christian and convince the 
Jew : together with a discourse of the twelve stones in Aaron's pectoral, their 
several virtues, &c. 

As also an harmonical parallel between the types of the O. Testament, 
and the four Evangelists' relations concerning our dear Lord and Saviour, 
respectively prefigured by the holy prophets, and other sacred writers. 
Moreover there are divers treatises showing how, and in what manner, times 
and places, the several promises and threatenings, foretold by Moses, did 
accordingly befal the Jews : with the fulfilling also of our Saviour's prophecy 
in the destruction of their city and temple, and the desolation of the land of 
Jewry : with the miseries which the Jews have sustained under many nations, 
and in particular here in England, France, Spain, Germany, &c. and their 
strange dispositions, and God's judgment on them to this day. 

All to testify the truth of the Divine Oracles. 

This work is also set forth with abundance of pictures, the better to express 
the stories and contents of it. 

This precedent work, called the Seventh piece, was also contrived in 
Nicholas Ferrar's lifetime, and a draught of it made, though not altogether 9 
with the additions and annexations to it : but was after his death contrived 
fully, as in the manner before set down : and made for the prince's use, to 
be presented to him, by the advice of some judicious and learned friends, 
that held it a work worthy of his acceptance, and might be both of pleasure 
and contentment, and useful to him in many kinds. 

9 Though not altogether.'] " But in his lifetime, he gave one in this kind to 
the bishop of Canterbury, containing only the first part of the whole Law of 
God. This the bishop sent to the university Library of Oxford, where 
there it is to be now seen, bound up, and so done by the hands of the 
Virgins of (Jiddinir. in green velvet, fairly bound and gilt." Marginal note 
in the MS. 


It so happened that in the year 1 642 the troubles in this land 
began to grow to height ; and the king and prince were forced 
by the disorders at London to repair to York. And the king 
lodging with the prince and some other nobility at Huntingdon 
one night, 'the next day afternoon it was his gracious pleasure to 
come and honour Little Gidding with his royal presence, the 
prince attending him, the palsgrave, the duke of Lennox, and 
divers other nobles ; and where his majesty staid some hours. 

First he went to view the chapel, and was pleased to express 
his good liking of it, saying, it was a fine neat thing. " But," 
said he, " where are those images, &c. so much talked of?" An- 
swer was made, " Such as his majesty now beheld it, was all that 
ever was there seen, or in it." He smiling said to the duke and 
palsgrave, " I knew it full well, that never any were in it. But 
what will not malice invent ?" One lord said, " It was affirmed 
to me, that there was a cross in one of the windows in painted 
glass." Answer was made, " Never any, but that, if so they 
meant it, that was upon the crown, that there was placed upon 
the lion's head, that did, in the west window at the entry into the 
church over the door, stand, where the king's arms l were placed 
in painted glass, and the lion that supported the arms had on the 
crown he wore on his head a little cross, as was ever used in the 
king's arms and supporters : and this was all the crosses that 
ever were seen in Gidding church ; or any other painted glass or 
pictures." The king looking up upon it, said, " What strange 
reports are in the world ! " So the prince, palsgrave and duke all 
smiled ; and the duke said, " Envy was quick-sighted.' 1 '' " Nay," 
said the palsgrave, " can see what is not" 

Then the king was pleased to go into the house, and demanded 
where the great book was that he had heard was made for 
Charles's use. It was soon brought unto him ; and the largeness 
and weight of it was such that he that carried it seemed to be 
well laden. Which the duke observing, said, " Sir, one of your 
strongest guard will but be able to carry this book." It being 
laid on the table before the king, it was told him, that though it 
were then fairly bound up in purple velvet, that the outside was 
not fully finished, as it should be, for the prince's use and better 
liking. " Well," said the king, " it is very well done." So he 
opened the book, the prince standing at the table's end, and the 
palsgrave and duke on each side of the king. The king read the 

1 King's arms.'] See note in vol. iii. p. 233. 
R 2 


title-page and frontispiece all over very deliberately: and well 
viewing the form of it, and how adorned with a stately garnish of 
pictures, &c. and the curiousness of the writing of it, said, 
" Charles, here is a book that contains excellent things. This 
will make you both wise and good." Then he proceeded to turn 
it over leaf by leaf, and took exact notice of all in it : and it being 
full of pictures of sundry men's cuts, he could tell the palsgrave, 
who seemed also to be knowing in that kind 2 , that this and this, 
and that and that, were of such a man's graving and invention. 
The prince all the while greatly eyed all things, and seemed 
much to be pleased with the book. The king having spent some 
hours in the perusal of it, and demanding many questions, 
occasion was, concerning the contrivement of it, having received 
answers to all he demanded, at length said, " It was only a 
jewel for a prince : and hoped Charles would make good use of 
it. And I see and find by what I have myself received for- 
merly from this good house, that they go on daily in the prosecu- 
tion of these excellent pieces. They are brave employments of 
their time." The palsgrave said to the prince, " Sir, your father 
the king is master of the goodliest ship in the world ; and I may 
now say, you will be master of the gallantest greatest book in the 
world. For I never saw such paper before ; and believe there is 
no book of this largeness to be seen in Christendom." " The 
paper and the book in all conditions," said the king, " I believe 
is not to be matched. Here hath also in this book not wanted, 
you see, skill, care, nor cost." " It is a most admirable piece," 
replied the duke of Richmond. So the king closing the book, 
said, " Charles this is yours." He replied, " But, sir, shall I 
not now have it with me?" Reply was made by one of the 

" Knowing in that kind.'] " It is a trite observation, that gunpowder was 
discovered by a monk, and printing by a soldier. It is an additional honour 
to the latter profession to have invented mezzotinto. . . . Born with the taste of 
an uncle, whom his sword was not fortunate in defending, prince Rupert was 
fond of those sciences which soften and adorn a hero's private hours ; and knew 
how to mix them with his minutes of amusement, without dedicating his life to 
their pursuit, like us, who, wanting capacity for momentous views, make serious 
study of what is only the transitory occupation of a genius. Had the court 
of the first Charles been peaceful, how agreeably had the prince's congenial 
prosperity flattered and confirmed the inclination of his uncle. How the 
muse of arts would have repaid the patronage of the monarch, when for his 
first artist she would have presented him with his nephew /"Horace 
Walpole's Catalogue of Engravers, &c. edit. 1786. p. 133-5. 


family, " If it please your highness, the book is not on the out- 
side so finished as it is intended for you ; but shall be, with all 
expedition, done, and you shall have it." " Well," said the king, 
" you must content yourself for a while." 

The palsgrave, who had left the king discoursing, had stepped 
into the other room by, and there seen the poor alms widows 
rooms, which were built for them. He then comes to the king, 
saying, " Sir, you shall, if you please to go with me, see another 
good thing, that will like you well." So the king and prince 
followed him, and the duke. So being come into the widows 
rooms, which were handsomely wainscotted, and four beds in 
them, after the Dutch manner of their alms houses, all along the 
walls ; the room being rubbed, and cleanly kept, the king looking 
well about him, and upon all things said, " Truly this is worth 
the sight. I did not think to have seen a thing in this kind, 
that so well pleaseth me. God's blessing be upon the founders 
of it ! Time was," speaking to the palsgrave, " that you would 
have thought such a lodging not amiss." " Yea, sir," said he, 
" and happy I had had it full often." So some questions the 
king asked about the widows, &c. and going out of the room 
into a long arbour in the garden, the duke following him, he put 
his hand into his pocket, and took out of it five pieces in gold 
saying to the duke, " Let these be given to the poor widows. It 
is all I have, else they should have more ;" (these he had won 
the night before of the palsgrave at cards at Huntingdon) " and 
will them to pray for me." 

While the king was walking, and talking, and commending the 
fine and pleasant situation of the house upon a little hill, which 
it stood upon, to divers about him, saying, " Gidding is a happy 
place in many respects ; I am glad I have seen it." The young 
lords had gone into the buttery, and there found apple-pies and 
cheese-cakes, and came out with pieces in their hands into the 
parlour, to the prince, and merrily said, " Sir, will your highness 
taste ; it is a good apple-pye as ever we eat." The prince 
laughed heartily at them : so wine was brought. The king came 
in, saying, " It grows late : the sun is going down : we must 
away." So their horses were brought to the door. The king 
mounting, those of the family, men and women, all kneeled down, 
and heartily prayed God to bless and defend him from his ene- 
mies ; and give him a long and happy reign. He lifting up his 
hand to his hat, replied, " Pray, pray for my speedy and safe 
return again." So the prince also took horse, and away they went. 


And as the king rode through the grounds, he espied a hare 
sitting, and then called to the duke for his piece, which he car- 
ried ; and as he sat on horse-back killed the hare ; but not so 
dead, but she ran a little way. But the prince, seeing her rise 
up, skipped off his horse, and ran after her through two or three 
furrows of water, and caught her, and laughing shewed her to the 
king. And away they went : but it was late before they got to 
Stamford that night. 

I had forgot to relate, that the king, a mile before he came at 
the house, seeing it stand upon a hill, demanded of sir Capel 
Beedells 3 , who then waited upon him, and sir Richard Stone, the 
high sheriff, whom he knighted the evening before, when he came 
into Huntingdon, what house that was that stood so pleasantly. 
They told him, Little Gidding. " Is that it ? I must go and visit 
it. Doth not our way lie beneath it ?" They said, " Aye. 1 ' 
Those of the family of Little Gidding, out of their windows, 
seeing the king's company afar off, coming that way, they all 
went down the hill, to the end of the lordship, and at the bridge 
attended the king's coming that way, as most desirous to see him 
and to kiss his hands. When the king came near them, he asked 
sir Capel who those people were ? He said the Ferrars' and 
Colletts' family that dwelt at Gidding. So the king approaching 
foremost of all, they went all to meet him ; and kneeling down 
prayed God to bless and preserve his majesty, and keep him safe 
from all his enemies' malice. The king gave them all, as they 
passed by, his hand to kiss. The prince seeing that, came gal- 
loping up, and did the like. Some of them went to kiss the 
palsgrave's hand, but he refused. But turning to the duke, and 
the other young lords, he said, " These ladies will not so soon get 
up the hill again. Come, let us take them up behind us." And 
so he came to persuade them. But they excused themselves, and 
made haste up the hill. The king rode on purpose a foot pace 
up the hill, talking with sir Capel and Mr. Hill, and demanding 
many questions. 

And this is what then happened at the presenting of this book, 
which ever since hath been preserved at Gidding, and attends the 
happy hour to be delivered into the right owner's hand ; which 
God Almighty grant in his due time ! 

Amen, Amen, Amen. 

3 Beedclls.'] Sir Capel Bedell, or Beedells (of Hamerton, in Huntingdon- 
shire, t\vo miles from Little Gidding) was created a baronet in 1622. He 
died 8. p. in 1663. 


Nicholas Ferrar, in a paper found in his study, thus writes 
in it : 

" The king of England (he would say) had more several languages spoken 
by the subjects of his dominions than any king in Christendom : and there- 
fore deserved to have a Bible of many languages, above other princes. 

f ' There are twelve spoken in his dominions. 

"1. English, spoken in England, and a good part of Scotland: those, I 
mean, that lie next to England. It is chiefly compounded of the Saxon, 
French, and Latin. 

" 2. Scottish, spoken more northerly in Scotland. It retains more of the 
old Saxon, and is not mingled with so many French words, as English is. 
Bishop Douglas translated Virgil into this dialect. 

" 3. Welsh, spoken in Wales. 

" 4. Cornish, spoken in Cornwall. It is a dialect of the Welsh, but very 

"5. Irish, spoken in Ireland. 

"6. Scot- Irish, a dialect of Irish; and is spoken in the Hebrides, islands 
lying on the West of Scotland. 

" 7. Hethyan. Hethy is an island of the Orcades, in which is spoken a 
language, which is a dialect of the Gothish or Norwegian. 

" 8. There is in Pembrokeshire in Wales, a country called Little Eng- 
land beyond Wales. They use a language compounded of the Dutch and 

" 9. In the islands of Guernsey and Jersey they speak a corrupt kind of 
French, somewhat like the Walloon, which the Belgee qui non teutonizant 

" 10. In the famous Isle of Man is spoken a language that is compounded 
of Welsh, Irish, Norwegian, but most Irish words. 

" This island deserves, and the people of it, a perpetual memorial, for 
many excellent things in it : which I cannot but thus briefly touch, in regard 
that my learned and pious uncle Nicholas Ferrar, of blessed memory, who 
had seen many parts of the world, would highly commend it, as a happy 
place to live in. For he would say, it were to be wished, and happy it were 
for England, that the same manner for law were here used, being a speedy 
and right way of justice, the soul of a kingdom, &c. That there were no 
beggars found in that island : that the inhabitants were most honest and 
religious, loving their pastors, to whom they use much reverence and 
respect ; they frequenting duly divine service, without division in the church 
or innovation in the commonwealth. They detest the disorders, as well civil 
as ecclesiastical, of neighbour nations. And the women of this country, to 
their no small commendation, whenever they go out of the doors, gird them- 
selves about with that winding-sheet, that they purpose to be buried in, to 
shew themselves perpetually mindful of their mortality. O rare example 
to all! 

"11. The languages spoken by the savages in the Virginian 
plantation. I These in the 

"12. That other kind also spoken in New England by C New World." 
those savages." J 


Also there was another paper that named all the mother tongues, with 
their daughters, which as yet I cannot find : but hope I shall ; and then 
(will it be) here underneath to be added. Sir, you know I did once shew 
it you in his study, with the other works before-mentioned, and these that 

8. EIGHTH WORK ; prepared but not begun. Materials only prepared, and 
a model drawn of it. 

Glory be to God on High. 

The New Testament of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, in twenty-six 
languages, with Arabick, Syriac, Greek, all interpreted, word for word, with 
Latin ; likewise Hebrew, Chaldee, Samaritan, Arabick, Syriac and Greek, all 
having their several Latin translations lying opposite to them ; which six 
languages are taken out of that most rare and accomplished Bible of the 
king of France, lately come forth, and as the French report, at the expence 
of very many thousand pounds, and great pains taken in it, and no few years 
spent to finish it. All these twenty-six languages are so composed and 
ordered, that at one view they may be seen and read, with much ease and 
pleasure as well as to use and benefit. The several twenty- six languages are 
those that follow : 

1. Hebrew. 14. English- Saxon. 

2. Syriack. 15. German. 

3. Greek. 16. Danish. 

4. Arabick. 17. Swedish. 

5. Chaldee. 18. Low Dutch. 

6. Samaritan. 19. English. 

7. ^Ethiopian. 20. Welsh. 

8. Sclavonian. 21. Irish. 

9. Hungarian. 22. Latin. 

10. Cantabrian. 23. Italian. 

11. Muscovian. 24. Spanish. 

12. Polonian. 25. French. 

13. Bohemian. 26. Portugall. 

And moreover there are twelve several English translations ; twenty 
various Latin translations ; three Italian ; three Spanish ; three French ; 
three High Dutch; and three Netherlands. And all these 4 also so placed, 

4 And all these.] " But these several translations are since resolved to be 
omitted, and in the place and stead of them, some other thing of more use 
and consequence there placed, and more suitable to this work." 

" Since this frontispiece was contrived, and the model of the work framed, 
it is by the advice and counsel of second thoughts (determined) that in the 
place and stead of the twelve several English translations, the twenty various, 
&c. there shall be placed now either a Concordance of the Four Evangelists, 
according to that first pattern you have seen and read, being the first work 
done at Gidding, and presented to the king, and set forth with pictures ; or 
that in that place of the several translations, if no Concordance be there 


ordered, and contrived that the eye may discern them at one time, and 
peruse them all with great content : and for the conclusion of the work there 
is added at the end of the book, that of doctor Fulke, intitled, " A Defence 
of the sincere and true translation of the Holy Scripture in the English 
tongue, against the manifold cavils, and insolent slanders of Gregory Martin, 
one of the translators of the Rhemish Bible :" and theirs and ours compared 
together in two several columns. And the Lord's Prayer is also annexed in 
three-score several languages. Laus Deo. 

Of this eighth piece the model and form was contrived to be as 
you have seen on the foregoing page in that manner. But these 
sad times coming on a-main gave an obstruction to the proceed- 
ings and attempt, so that it hath lain still till this year 1 65 . 
And now it hath so fallen out 5 that, (to the honour of those 
worthy learned men, that have by their great care and diligence 
set it on foot,) the printing of the Holy Bible in eight several 
languages is designed here in England ; the which work in many 
respects is like to pass that Bible both of the king of Spain's, 
and the aforenamed king of France's : in which regard it is now 
thought fitting to defer this model, and intended work, till that 
our Bible be finished. And then by the good blessing of God, 
and the help of some of those active hands, that are yet alive, 
who were instruments of the other many precedent works, as you 
have heard, this may in a good hour be begun, and by the 
help of God and good friends brought into light and finished. 
So contriving it by that neat way of pasting upon mighty large 
paper, provided for the same purpose, without which it cannot be 
effected, that these twenty-six or twenty-eight several languages 
may be, upon the opening of the book, all seen and read with 
much profitableness and no less pleasure. A book it will be that 

placed, then doctor Hammond's, that learned man's, Comments lately 
printed, shall be placed, and brought into this book, as a necessary and pro- 
fitable jewel, to be interwoven into the book, as the model drawn doth justly 
declare to the eye. Glory be to God on high : Peace on earth : Good will 
amongst men. Amen." Marginal note in the MS. 

6 So fallen out J] The printing of the Polyglot, an illustrious monument of 
zeal and learning, erected to the glory of their country by bishop Walton, 
and other episcopal divines, in times of great distress and persecution, began 
in 1653, and was finished in 1657. The first printed proposals respecting it 
were issued in the year 1652. 


hath not its parallel or match in the whole world, and may well 
become, as many learned men say that have seen the model of it, 
the best library in the Christian world, and a jewel not misbe- 
seeming the greatest potentate's study. God Almighty give both 
means and heads and hands to effect it : to whom must be the 
glory, praise and honour ! Amen, Amen, Amen c . 

c Here end the extracts from the Lambeth MS. No. 251. 


MR. JOHN FERRAR, author of the old MS. frequently referred 
to, wrote to Ed. Lenton, Esq. of Notley, enquiring whether a 
letter from him formerly written to Serjt. Hetley, was not the 
groundwork of a libellous pamphlet *, entitled, The Arminian 
Nunnery, at Little Gidding in Huntingdonshire. Mr. Lenton's 
answer and vindication of himself, as follows, is dated Oct. 27, 
the year not specified, but it was 1642 : 


If your messenger had staid but one night longer, I would not 
have delayed my answer to your so discrete and respectful a 
letter ; which makes me wish we were better acquainted, in 
hopes to confirm your good and charitable opinion of me. 

Sir, I confess I should much degenerate from my birth (being 
a gentleman), my breeding (well known to the world), and the 
religion I profess ; if having, upon something a bold visit, been 
entertained in your family with kind and civil respects, I should 
requite it with such scorn and calumny as this libellous pamphlet 
seems to insinuate. 

Sir, my conceit of it is, that, in this time of too much liberty 
(if not licentiousness) of the press, many ballad-makers and 
necessitous persons (it may be, set on work by some printers 
themselves, to promote their trade) distil their barren brains to 
make provision for their empty bellies, by publishing such novel- 
ties and fictions as they think will vent best ; and, when they have 
spent their own little wit, borrow of others to eke it out ; and so, 
enterlacing some shreds of their own, they patch up a penny 
pamphlet, to serve for their morning's draught. 

Of this strain I take this book to be. The ground whereof 

1 Libellous pamphlet.'] See the note at p. 208. 


(you doubt, but I doubt not) was the letter I writt to Sir Thomas 
Hettley (many years since) upon his request, that, in my passage 
from him to my lord Montague's, being by your house, I would 
see and certify what I could in so short a stay, touching the 
various reports divulged in most places of your religious rites and 

To which my true relation (which I am sorry and marvel how 
it should light in such hucksters-hands) the pamphleteer, by his 
additions and subtractions, interweaving truth with falsehood to 
purchase some credit to his untruths, hath drawn conclusions 
and accusations of Arminianism and other fopperies, not once 
mentioned in my letter ; but, as wisely as that atheist, who, 
to prove there was no God, vouched one end of a verse 
where David in his psalms saith, There is no God ; and left out 
the beginning of the verse, That the fool hath said it in his 

By this time, sir, I hope you see I am so far from being the 
author, infuser, abettor or countenancer of this fable, that, by it 
I take myself to be as much abused, and that there is as much 
aspersion cast upon me as upon your family, by a sly and cun- 
ning intimation (my letter being his ground-work) to make me 
thought (by such as know me not well) to be the author and 
divulger of his lies and scandals, which (by God^s mercy) my soul 

Had he shewed his dislike of some of the ceremonies, &c. (as I 
myself did, by way of argument) I should not (nor, I think, you) 
so much have kindled at it. But so to add to, subtract, pervert, 
and falsify my letter, I think the author (if haply he may be found 
out) deserves to be censured as a counterfeiter of false letters 
and tokens, and as a contriver and publisher of false news, 
according to the law of the land and the statutes in like case 

His ignorance (which yet excuseth not a toto, if a tanto) I 
think will be his best plea. For, it should seem, he is no great 
clerk. Which I observe even almost at the beginning of his story, 
\\ h -re he tells a tale as of a third person, and in the same clause, 
within two or three lines after, ineptly changeth it into the first 
person; without any apt transition. A solecism which a in< an 
scholar would hardly have fallen into. 

To have put the true copy of my letter in print, without my 
privity, had been a great inhumanity. But, to pervert it with so 


many falsifications, and laying his inhumanities on me, I think, 
none but a licentious libeller, or a beggarly ballad-maker, would 
have offered. 

I was so conscious to myself of intending no wrong to your 
family in my relation, that I thought to have sent your brother 
[N. F .] a copy thereof ; and had done it, if want of opportunity 
in his lifetime, and his death afterwards, had not prevented me. 
And I would now send you a true copy thereof, if you had not 
wrote to me, that you had it presently after my writing it. And 
sith I have been at your house long since (for it is about seven 
years past, as I take it, that I writ the relation) I presume you 
would have expostulated the matter with me, if you had taken 
any just exception or distaste at it. But therein you might well 
perceive, that I endeavoured not to detract any thing from you, 
or to conceal even the civility or humility I found, or what I had 
heard or believed of your works of charity. 

Thus, sir, even the very same day I received your's (for there 
needs no long time to answer a matter of fact with matter of 
truth ; and being full of indignation to be thus traduced, whereof 
I longed instantly to discharge myself) I scribled over this candid 
and ingenuous answer. And I am now troubled that you gave 
me no direction for the address thereof to you ; which, when haply 
you shall receive, I leave to your own discretion, to make what 
use thereof you please ; presuming that you will therein have the 
like respects to me which herein I have had to you. So leaving 
us to the guidance of our good God, I subscribe, as you to me, 
your friend and servant, 


Notley, near Thame^ Oct. 27. 

To the worshipful my worthily esteemed friend 
John Ferrar, Esq. at his house in Little 
Gidding in Huntingdonshire. 

The copy of my letter to sir Thomas Hetley, kt. and ser- 
jeant at law, upon his request to certify as I found. 

Good Mr. Serjeant 5 . 

I can give you but a short account of my not two hours stay 
at the reputed (at least reported) nunnery at Gidding ; and yet 


must leave out three parts of our passages, as fitter for a relation 
than a letter. 

I came thither after ten ; and found a fair house, fairly seated ; 
to which I passed through a fine grove and sweet walks, letticed 
and gardened on both sides. 

Their livelihood 500J. per annum, as my lord Montague * told 
me ; one of his mansion houses being within two or three miles 
of them. 

A man-servant brought me into a fair spacious parlour. 
Whither, soon after, came to me the old gentlewoman"^ second 
son [Nicholas Ferrar ;] a batchelor, of a plain presence, but of 
able speech and parts. Who, after I had (as well as in such 
case I could) deprecated any ill conceit of me, for so unusual 
and bold a visit, entertained me very civilly and with much 
humility. Yet said, I was the first who ever came to them in 
that kind ; though not the first whom they had heard of, who 
determined to come. After deprecations and some compliments, 
he said, I should see his mother, if I pleased. I shewing my 
desire, he went up into a chamber, and presently returned with 
these ; namely, his mother, a tall, straight, clear-complexioned, 
grave matron, of eighty years of age : his elder brother, married 
(but whether a widower, I asked not), a short, black- complexioned 
man : his apparel and hair so fashioned as made him shew priest- 
like : and his sister, married to one Mr. Colet : by whom she 
hath 14 or 15 children : all which are in the house (which I saw 
not yet). And of these, and two or three maid-servants, the 
family consists. 

I saluted the mother and daughter, not like nuns, but as we 
use to salute other women. And (after we were all seated 
circular- wise, and my deprecations renewed to the other three b ) 
I desired that, to their favour of entertaining me, they would add 
the giving of me a free liberty to speak ingenuously what I con- 
ceived of any thing I should see or have heard of, without any 
distaste to them. 

\Vhich being granted ; I first told them, what I had heard of 
the nuns of Gidding. Of two, watching and praying all night. 
Of their canonical hours. Of their crosses on the outside and 
inside of their chapel. Of an altar there, richly docked with 
plate, tapestry, and tapers. Of their adorations and cr ninil.-i- 

2 Lord Montague'] Edward, first lord Montagu of Bonghton. 
/ b Mr. John Ferrar, Mr. Nicholas Ferrar, and Mr. John Collet. 


tions at their entering therein. Which, I objected, might savor 
of superstition and popery. 

Here the younger son, the mouth for them all, cut me off ; 
and, to this last, answered first, with a protestation, that he did 
as verily believe the pope to be antichrist as any article of his 
faith. Wherewith I was satisfied and silenced, touching that 

For the nunnery ; he said, That the name of nuns was odious. 
But the truth (from whence that untrue report might arise) was, 
that two of his nieces had lived, one, thirty ; the other, thirty- 
two years, virgins ; and so resolved to continue (as he hoped they 
would) the better to give themselves to fasting and prayer : but 
had made no vows 3 . 

For the canonical hours, he said, they usually prayed six times 
a day. As I remember, twice a day publicly, in the chapel ; and 
four times more, privately, in the house. In the chapel, after 
the order of the book of common-prayer : in their house, parti- 
cular prayers for a private family. 

I said, if they spent so much time in praying, they would 
leave little for preaching or for their weekly callings. For the 
one I vouched the text, He that turneth away his ear from 

3 No vows.~\ "Yet nothing is so sound, but in time it will run into corrup- 
tion. For I must not hold it in, that some persons in Little Gidding had run 
into excess, and incurred offence, if the bishop had not broken the snare, 
which they were preparing for their own feet. For after he had spoken well 
of the family in the pulpit, and privately to divers, some of them could not 
see when they were well, but aspired to be transcendants above their measure. 
For two daughters of the stock came to the bishop, and offered themselves 
to be veiled virgins, to take upon them the vow of perpetual chastity, with 
the solemnity of the episcopal blessing, and ratification : whom he admo- 
nished very fatherly, that they knew not what they went about : that they 
had no promise to confirm that grace unto them ; that this readiness, which 
they had in the present, should be in their will, without repentance to their 
life's end. Let the younger women marry, was the best advice, that they 
might not be led into temptation. And that they might not forget what he 
taught them, he drew up his judgment in three sheets of paper, and sent it 
to them home, that they might dress themselves by that glass, and learn not 
to think of human nature, above that which it is, a sea of flowings and 
ebbings, and of all manner of inconstancy. The direction of God was in 
this counsel ; for one of the gentlewomen afterwards took a liking to a good 
husband, and was well bestowed." Backet's Life of Archbishop Williams, 
part ii. p. 52. 


hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination c . For the 
other, Six days shalt thou labour, &c. 

To the one he answered, that a neighbour minister of another 
parish caine on Sunday-mornings, and preached ; and sometimes 
they went to his parish. To the other, that their calling was to 
serve God ; which he took to be the best. 

I replied, that for men in health and of active bodies and 
parts, it were a tempting of God to quit our callings, and wholly 
to betake ourselves to fasting, prayer, and a contemplative life, 
which by some is thought little better than a serious kind of idle- 
ness : not to term it (as St. Austin terms moral virtues without 
Christ) splendida peccata. 

He enjoined, that they had found divers perplexities, distrac- 
tions, and almost utter ruin, in their callings. But (if others 
knew what comfort and content God ministered to them since 
their sequestration, and with what incredible improvements of 
their livelihood) it might encourage others to [take] the like 

I said that such an imitation might be of dangerous conse- 
quence. And that if any, in good case before, should fall into 
poverty [when entered into it,] few afterwards would follow the 

For their night-watchings, and their rising at four of the clock 
in the morning (which I thought was [too] much for one of four- 
score years, and for children). To the one he said, it was not 
[too] much ; since they always went to bed at seven of the clock 
in the evening. For the other, he confessed, there were every 
night two (alternatim) continued all night in their devotions, who 
went not to bed until the rest arose. 

For the crosses he made the usual answer, that they were not 
ashamed of that badge of the Christian profession which the first 
propugners of the faith bare in their banners, and which we, in 
our church discipline, retain to this day. 

For their chapel ; that it was now near chapel time (for 
eleven is the hour in the forenoon), and that I might, if I 
pleased, accompany them thither, and so satisfy myself best of 
what I had heard concerning that. Which afterwards I willingly 

c Prov. xxviii. 9. 


In the mean time I told them, I perceived all was not true 
which I had heard of the place. For I could see no such inscrip - 
tion on the frontispiece of the house, containing a kind of invita- 
tion of such as were willing to learn of them, or would teach them 
better. Which, I said, was some encouragement for me to come 
(as one desirous to learn, not teach), and might be some excuse 
of my audacity, if they would be pleased so to accept it. But he, 
barring me from farther compliments, said, the ground of that 
report hung over my head. 

We sitting by the chimney, [I saw] in the chimney piece was 
a manuscript tableture ; which, after I had read, I craved leave 
to beg a copy of (so they would not take me for too bold a 
beggar). He forthwith took it down, and commanded it to be 
presently transcribed and given to me. I offered the writer 
money, for his deserved pains : which was refused. And the 
master [N. F.] conjured me not to offer it a second time. And 
thereupon [also he] made it his [farther] suit [to me], not to 
offer any thing to any in that house, at my parting, or otherwise. 
The words of the protestation are as folio weth d . 

The matter of this declaration being in such general terms, I 
said, I thought it without exception. But I prayed leave to except 
a circumstance, namely, the superscription : it being the proper 
character of the Jesuits in every book and exhibit of theirs. He 
said it was that auspicious name, [Jesus] worthy to be the alpha 
and omega of all our doings ; and that we are commanded to 
write such things on the posts of our houses and upon our gates. 
(Deut. vi. 9.) I told him, I was far from excepting against that 
sacred, saving name of Jesus : only I could have wished it written 
at length, or any other way, to have differenced it from that 
which the papists only use, but no Protestants. And, that the 
text he mentioned, was in the Old Testament (where there was 
no mention of Jesus, but of Jehovah) to my remembrance. But 

We passed from this towards the chapel, being about forty 
paces from the house ; yet [were] staid a little (as with a paren- 
thesis) by a glass of sack, a sugar-cake, and a fine napkin, brought 
by a mannerly maid. Which refreshed my memory to tell them 
what my lord bishop of Lincoln [Williams] said of them. Wherein 
yet I brake no laws of humanity or hospitality (though spoken at 
his table.) For he said nothing but what they wished and were 

d "IHS 

" He who by reproof," &c. see p, 206 of these Memoirs. 



glad to hear ; [all] being but the relation of the grave and dis- 
creet answers (as my lord himself termed them) of the old gentle- 
woman to some of his lordship's expostulations. 

To that part concerning the young deacon, whom his lordship 
had heard of, to come from Cambridge to officiate in their chapel ; 
he (innuendo even the younger son, who only was the speaker) 
said, that himself was the young deacon intended. That he is 
two and forty years old ; was fellow of an house in Cambridge ; 
and hath taken the orders of a deacon. To say nothing of his 
having been at Rome (whereof I could have excepted no more 
against him than he might against me). For having been so long 
in the labour of the chapel, it is now high time we were at the 

At the entering thereof he made a low obeysance ; a few paces 
farther, a lower ; coming to the half-pace (which was at the east 
end, where the tables stood) he bowed to the ground, if not pros- 
trated himself : then went up into a fair, large reading place (a 
preaching place being of the same proportion, right over against 
it). The mother, with all her train (which were her daughter 
and daughter's daughters) had a fair island seat. 

He placed me above, upon the half-pace, with two fair window- 
cushions of green velvet before me. Over against me was such 
another seat, so suited ; but no body to sit in it. The daugli 
four sons kneeled all the while on the edge of the half-pace ; all 
in black gowns. (And they went to church in round Monmouth 
caps, as my man said ; for I looked not back) the rest all in 
black, save one of the daughter's daughters, who was in a fryer's 
grey gown. 

We being thus placed, the deacon (for so I must now call him) 
with a very loud and distinct voice, began with the Litany, read 
divers prayers and collects in the book of Common-prayer, and 
Athanasius his creed, and concluded with The Peace of God. 

All ended, the mother, with all her company, attended my 
coming down. But her son (the deacon) told her, I would stay 
awhile to view the chapel. So with all their civil salutation 
wards me (which I returned them afar off; for I durst not come 
nearer, lest I should have light upon one of the virgins ; not 
knowing whether they would have taken a kiss 4 in good part or 
no) they departed home. 

4 A K.] Then, and long afterwards, a common salutation. On its use 
at an earlier time, see vol. i. p. 533. 


Now (none but the deacon and I left) I observed the chapel, in 
general, to be fairly and sweetly adorned with herbs and flowers, 
natural in some places, and artificial upon every pillar along both 
sides the chapel (such as are in cathedral churches) with tapers 
(I mean great virgin- wax-candles) on every pillar. 

The half-pace at the upper end (for there was no other division 
betwixt the body of the chapel and the east part) was all covered 
with tapestry. And, upon that half-pace, stood the communion- 
table (not altar- wise, as reported 6 ) with a rich carpet hanging 
very large upon the half-pace ; and some plate, as a chalice, and 
candlesticks, with wax candles. 

By the preaching place stood the font; the leg, laver, and 
cover, all of brass, cut and carved. The cover had a cross erected. 
The laver was of the bigness of a barber's bason. 

And this is all which I had leisure to observe in the chapel ; 
save that I asked for the organs? And he told me, they were 
not there ; but that they had a pair in their house. 

I asked also, what use they made of so many tapers ? He said, 
to give them light, when they could not see without them. 

Then (having, as I told you before, obtained leave to say what 
I listed) I asked him, to whom he made all those courtesies ? He 
said, to God. I asked if the papists made any other answer for 
their bowing to images and crucifixes? yet we account them 
idolaters for so doing. He said, we have no such warrant for the 
one. But for the other we have a precept, to do all things with 
decency and order ; as he took this to be. 

I demanded, then, why he used not the same solemnity in his 
service at his house ? And, whether he thought the chapel more 
holy than his house? He said, No. But that God was more 

e [Formerly the church puritans generally set the communion table either 
in the body of the church, or (if in the chancel, yet) with the two ends point- 
ing east and west (not north and south). And Williams, now bishop of Lin- 
coln (in opposition to archbishop Laud and others, who set it altar-wise) 
insisted much upon their standing so. And, in obedience to bishop Williams 
(who was his diocesan) no doubt it was, that Mr. Ferrar set his communion 
table, after the puritan manner, with the two ends pointing east and west. 
Though, I guess, it stood otherwise 'till this year 1635. Be that as it will, 
this passage may serve to shew, that bishop Williams was, even then, hatching 
his " Holy Table, Name, and Thing" (printed [anonymously'] in 1637) and 
setting others to oppose the archbishop's usage. Though the bishop's own 
practice, in his own chapel at Buckden, both before and after, was other- 
wise. F. P.] 

s 2 


immediately present, while we were worshipping him in the 

I replied, that I thought God was as present at Paul's cross as 
at Paul's church ; and at the preaching-place at Whitehall, and 
'spital sermons, as elsewhere. For where two or three are 
gathered together in his name, God is in the midst of them. And 
yet in those places (no not in the body of the church, though 
there be a sermon and prayers there) we do not use this threefold 
reverence, nor any low bowing, unless in the chancel towards the 
east, where an altar, or some crucifix, is? He answered me 
something of the trinary number, which I did not understand, 
nor well hear. 

This, as all other our discourse, being ended with mildness and 
moderation (on his part at least) I said farther, since their devo- 
tions (from which they would be loth to be diverted or inter- 
rupted, as in the said protestation appears) are more strict and 
regular than usual, if in their consciences they were persuaded 
that all their formalities and ceremonies were but adiaphora 
(things indifferent) I then thought they were as wise as serpents 
(in the Scripture sense) in complying so with the church ceremo- 
nies, .that they might the safelier hold on their course without 
exception. For in this comportment, I thought, authority would 
not except against them, unless for exceeding the cathedrals; 
who make but one reverence, whereas they make three. He 
said, I spake like one who seemed to have had experience in the 

It being now near twelve o'clock, we ended our discourse, and 
I called for my horses; hoping that thereupon he would have 
invited me to stay dinner : not that I care for his or any man's 
meat (for you had given me a dinner in too good a breakfast) but 
that I might have gained more time to have seen and observed 
more of their fashions ; and whether the virgins and younger sort 
would have mingled with us? with divers other things, which 
such a dinner-time would have best have ministered matter for. 
But, instead of making me stay, he helped me in calling for my 
horses ; accompanying me even to my stirrup. And so, I not 
returning into the house, as we friendly met, we friendly part* <1. 

Many more questions I thought on, wlu-n it was too late ; and 
yet you see I was not idle for the short time I stayed. I asked 
him, of their monthly receiving the sacrament? And, whether 
their servants (when they received) were attended by their mas- 


ters and mistresses, and suffered not so much as to lay and take 
away their own trenchers, as I had heard ? whereat he smiled, as 
at a frivolous fable, and said, the only difference [then] from other 
clays was, that the servants (the day they received) sat at the 
same table with them. 

I heard also that they never roast any meat ; only boil and 
bake (but not in paste), that their servants may not be much 
hindered from their devotions. And that they have but one 
horse amongst them all. But of these I made no mention. 

They are extraordinary well reported of by their neighbours, 
viz. that they are very liberal to the poor ; at great cost in pre- 
paring physic and surgery, for the sick and sore (whom they visit 
often), and that some sixty or eighty poor people they task with 
catechetical questions : which when they come and make answer 
to, they are rewarded with money and their dinner. By means 
of which reward of meat and money, the poor catechumens learn 
their lessons well ; and so their bodies and souls too are well 

I find them full of humanity and humility. And others speak 
as much of their charity : which I also verily believe. And 
therefore am far from censuring them : of whom I think much 
better than of myself. My opposing of sonie of their opinions 
and practices as you see in this my relation (wherein T may have 
varied in some circumstances, but nothing from the substance) 
was only by way of argument, and for my own better information, 
I shall be glad to observe how wiser men will judge of them, or 
imitate their course of life. 

I intended not a third part of this when I began, as you may 
see by my first lines. But one thing drawing on another, I have 
now left out little or nothing to my remembrance ; saving what I 
thought fitting in good manners, upon my first affront, to make 
way for my welcome, and ad captandam benevolentiam ; which is 
not worth the repeating, if I could ; and I am something better 
at acting such a part, than at relating it : though good at neither. 

After this long and tedious relation, J must now make but 
short thanks to yourself and my lady for my long and kind wel- 
come ; wherein my wife joins with me ; praying your remembering 
our loving respects to our kind nieces (hoping the good scholars 
at Westminster are well). And so I leave you to the grace of 
God ; and am the same, your loving friend, 



HAVING been desired by a very worthy and judicious friend to 
give a specimen of Mr. Ferraris devotional compositions, I here 
add one prayer, which was used regularly the first Sunday in 
every month, and one which was drawn up on the particular occa- 
sion of the dangerous illness of his dear friend Mr. Geo. Herbert. 

The established rule of the family was to receive the sacra- 
ment the first Sunday of every month in the parish church, and 
on those days in their devotions at home to add a general form of 
thanksgiving for dangers escaped, and mercies received ; of which 
the following is a copy something shortened. 

" We come, Lord, most mighty God, and merciful Father, 
to offer unto thy .Divine Majesty, the monthly tribute of that 
duty, which indeed we are continually bound to perform, the ten- 
der of our most humble and hearty thanks for those inestimable 
benefits which we, unworthy sinners, have from time to time in 
abundant manner received of thy goodness, and do even unto this 
hour enjoy. Yet by our ingratitude and abuse of them, we have 
deserved not only the deprivation of these good things, but that 
by a rigorous chastisement thou shouldest make us an example of 
thine impartial justice. For there is none, O Lord, to whom 
thou hast given more abundance or greater variety of the com- 
forts of this life. If we should go about to tell them, they are 
more in number than the sand ; there are none upon whom thou 
hast more freely conferred them : yet ought we to confess that 
we are not worthy of the least of thy favours. And as in regard 
of our unworthiness, so likewise in respect of the lowliness of our 
condition whence thou hast raised us, of the dangers wherewith 
we have been environed, of the difficulties wherewith we have 
been enthralled, we must needs cry out, Great are the wondrous 
works which thou hast done : for on every side we hear the voice 
of the beholders, Blessed are the people who are in such a case. 
Wonderful indeed hath been thy goodness towards us : while the 
wise have been disappointed in their counsels, while the full of 
friends have been left desolate, while the men whose hands \ 
mighty have found nothing, while the strong on every side have 
fallen, we, O Lord, have been by thy power raised up, by thine 
arm have we been strengthened, guided by thy counsels, and 
relieved by the favour of thy mercies. And that we might know 
that it was thy doing, by those ways and means which we thought 
not of, thou hast brought us into a wealthy place, and to ti 
many comforts which we now enjoy. And although we have 


not any way deserved thy favours, yet is thy patience extended 
towards us. We must needs acknowledge, Lord, that the 
liberality of thy hand is extended even beyond the largeness of 
our own hearts. And yet, O Lord, all this is nothing in compa- 
rison of that which we may farther enjoy. By how much the 
things of heaven do surpass those of the earth, by how much 
everlasting happiness is more worth than the transitory and feeble 
pleasures of this life, by so much more surpassing are those 
graces and favours with which thou hast furnished us for the 
knowledge of thy heavenly will, and for the practices of those 
duties, of which our conversation in this world, is capable. 

u Thou hast given to us a freedom from all other affairs, that 
we may without distraction attend thy service. That holy gospel 
which came down from heaven, which things the angels desire to 
look into, is by thy goodness, continually open to our view : the 
sweet music thereof is continually sounding in our ears : hea- 
venly songs are by thy mercy put into our mouths, and our 
tongues and lips made daily instruments of pouring forth thy 
praise. This, Lord, is the work, and this the pleasure of the 
angels in heaven : and dost thou vouchsafe to make us partakers 
of so high an happiness ? The knowledge of thee, and of thy 
Son is everlasting life. Thy service is perfect freedom : how 
happy then are we, that thou dost constantly retain us in the 
daily exercise thereof! 

" With these favours, and mercies, Lord, we ought to ac- 
knowledge ourselves most happy : we ought to be joyful in the 
midst of adversities, in the depth of affliction, and in the height 
of distress. How much more then are we bound to thee for thy 
merciful continuance of those blessings which we enjoy ! we are 
bound, Lord, but unable to perform this duty as we ought ; 
yet since thou hast invited us, we now come to the performance 
thereof ; to render to thy divine majesty the most humble and 
hearty acknowledgment of our own demerits, and thy infinite 
goodness. We beseech thee that thou wilt enlarge our hearts, 
and open our mouths, that our prayers may be set forth in thy 
sight as incense, and the lifting up of our hands as a sacrifice 
unto thee, for the only merits of thy dear Son, in whose name 
and mediation we offer up both our prayers and praises, and 
together with them ourselves, beseeching thee that they being 
sanctified by thy grace, may be every way made acceptable to 
thee. Amen." 


On particular occurrences, Mr. Ferrar composed more parti- 
cular forms, to be used occasionally, of which the following is an 

"On Friday " (date not mentioned) " Mr. Mapletoft brought 
us word that Mr. Herbert was said to be past hope of recovery, 
which was very grievous news to us, and so much the more so, 
being altogether unexpected. We presently therefore made 
our public supplication for his health in the words, and manner 
following : 

" O most mighty God, and merciful Father, we most humbly 
beseech thee, if it be thy good pleasure, to continue to us that 
singular benefit which thou hast given us in the friendship of thy 
servant, our dear brother, who now lieth on the bed of sickness. 
Let him abide with us yet awhile, for the furtherance of our 
faith. We have indeed deserved by our ingratitude, not only the 
loss of him, but whatever other opportunities thou hast given us 
for the attainment of our salvation. We do not deserve to be heard 
in our supplications ; but thy mercies are above all thy works. 
In consideration whereof we prostrate ourselves in all humble 
earnestness, beseeching thee, if so it may seem good to thy 
Divine Majesty, that thou wilt hear us in this, who hast heard us 
in all the rest, and that thou wilt bring him back again from the 
gates of death : that thou wilt yet a while spare him, that he 
may h've to thy honour and our comfort. Lord, thou hast willed 
that our delights should be in the saints on earth, and in such as 
excel in virtue : how then should we not be afflicted, and mourn 
when thou takest them away from us ! Thou hast made him a 
great help, and furtherance of the best things amongst us, how 
then can we but esteem the loss of him, a chastisement from thy 
displeasure ! O Lord, we beseech thee that it may not be so : we 
beseech thee, if it be thy good pleasure, restore unto us our dear 
brother, by restoring to him his health : so will we praise and 
magnify thy name, and mercy, with a song of tlianksgiving. 
Hear us, O Lord, for thy dear Son's sake, Jesus Christ our 
Saviour. Amen." 

Thus have I complied with the desire of a worthy friend ; ami 
in so doing have, I think, given to the public, in these examples, 
not only a proof of the piety of Mr. Ferrar, but also of his excel- 
lence in devotional composition. 


Let us all adore and bless God's wisest choices, and set vigorously to the 
task that lies before us ; improving the present advantages, and supplying in 
the abundance of the inward beauty what is wanting to the outward lustre of 
a Church ; and we shall not fail to find that the grots and caves lie as open 
to the celestial influences as the fairest and most beautified temples. And it 
must be our greatest blame and wretchedness, if what hath now befallen us 
be not effectually better for us, than whatever else even piety could have sug- 
gested to us to wish or pray for. 



IN the year 1660 was published in 4to, a volume intitled, The 
Shaking of the Olive Tree : the remaining Works of that incom- 
parable prelate Joseph Hall, D.D. late lord Ushop of Norwich. It 
contained among other things, Observations of some specialities of 
Divine Providence in the Life of Joseph Hall, Ushop of Norwich ; 
and his Hard Measure ; both written with his own hand. The 
Following Life is composed principally of a republication of those 
two tracts. They are printed from the above-mentioned edition 
of the year 1660. 


NOT out of a vain affectation of my own glory, which I know 
how little it can avail me, when I am gone hence ; but out of 
a sincere desire to give glory to my God, (whose wonderful 
providence I have noted in all my ways) have I recorded some 
remarkable passages of my fore- past life. What I have done 
is worthy of nothing, but silence and forgetfulness : but what 
God hath done for me, is worthy of everlasting and thankful 

I was born July 1, 1574, at five of the clock in the morning, 
in Bristow-Park, within the parish of Ashby de la Zouch, a town 
in Leicestershire, of honest and well allowed patronage. My 
father was an officer under that truly honourable and religious 
Henry, earl of Huntingdon, president of the north, and under him 
had the government of that market-town, wherein the chief seat 
of that earldom is placed. My mother Winifride, of the house of 
the Bambridges *, was a woman of that rare sanctity, that (were it 
not for my interest in nature,) I durst say, that neither Aleth, 
the mother of that just honour of Clareval 2 ; nor Monica, nor any 
other of those pious matrons, antiently famous for devotion, need 
to disdain her admittance to comparison. She was continually 
exercised with the affliction of a weak body, and oft of a wounded 
spirit, the agonies whereof, as she would oft recount with much 
passion, professing that the greatest bodily sicknesses were but 
flea-bites to those scorpions, so from them all at last she found 
an happy and comfortable deliverance, and that not without a 

1 Bambridges] Or rather Bainbridge, or Bainbrigge, of Ashby and Lock- 
in gton. 

2 Just honour of Clareval.'] St. Bernard of Clairvaux, whose mother was 
Alethea, daughter of the Count of Montbar. 


more than ordinary hand of God. For on a time being in great 
distress of conscience, she thought in her dream, there stood by 
her a grave personage, in the gown, and other habits of a physi- 
cian, who enquiring of her estate, and receiving a sad and queru- 
lous answer from her, took her by the hand, and bade her be of 
good comfort, for this should be the last fit that ever she should 
feel of this kind ; whereto she seemed to answer, that upon that 
condition, she could well be content for the time, with that, or 
any other torment. Reply was made to her, as she thought, with 
a redoubled assurance of that happy issue of this her last trial ; 
whereat she began to conceive an unspeakable joy ; which yet 
upon her awaking left her more disconsolate, as then conceiting 
her happiness imaginary, her misery real ; when the very same 
day, she was visited by the reverend, and (in his time) famous 
divine, Mr. Anthony Gilby s , under whose ministry she lived ; who, 
upon the relation of this her pleasing vision, and the contrary 
effects it had in her, began to persuade her, that dream was no 
other than divine, and that she had good reason to think that 
gracious premonition was sent her from God himself, who, though 
ordinarily he keeps the common road of his proceedings, yet 
sometimes in the distresses of his servants, he goes unusual ways to 
their relief. Hereupon she began to take heart, and by good coun- 
sel and her fervent prayers, found that happy prediction verified 
to her ; and upon all occasions in the remainder of her life, was 
ready to magnify the mercy of her God in so sensible a deliver- 
ance. What with the trial of both these hands of God, so had 
she profited in the school of Christ, that it was hard for any friend 
to come from her discourse no whit holier. How often have I 
blessed the memory of those divine passages of experimental divi- 
nity, which I have heard from her mouth ! What day did she 
pass without a large task of private devotion, whence she would 
still come forth with a countenance of undissembled mortification ! 
Never any lips have read to me such feeling lectures of piety ; 
neither have I known any soul, that more accurately prac ; 
them, than her own. Temptations, desertions, and spiritual 
comforts were her usual theme ; shortly, for I can hardly take 

* Anthony Gilby.'] A native of Lincolnshire, vicar of Ashby. He was one 
of the most eminent of the early puritans. Peck says that lie lived at Ashby 
" as great as a 1 SM Tenner's UHiliotheca, p. 318. Hcylin's Presby- 

terians, p. 2f)O. Fuller's Church ///.s/o?-//. ix. TC. 


off my pen from so exemplary a subject, her life and death were 

My parents had from mine infancy devoted me to this sacred 
calling, whereto, by the blessing of God, I have seasonably 
attained. For this cause I was trained up in the public school 
of the place. After I had spent some years (not altogether indi- 
ligently) under the ferule of such masters as the place afforded, 
and had near attained to some competent ripeness for the univer- 
sity ; my school-master, being a great admirer of one Mr. Pelset 4 , 
who was then lately come from Cambridge, to be the public 
preacher of Leicester, (a man very eminent in those times, for 
the fame of his learning, but especially for his sacred oratory) 
persuaded my father, that if I might have my education under so 
excellent and complete a divine, it might be both a nearer, and 
easier way to his purposed end, than by an academical institution. 
The motion sounded well in my father's ears, and carried fair 
probabilities ; neither was it other than fore-compacted betwixt 
my school-master and Mr. Pelset ; so as on both sides it was 
entertained with great forwardness. 

The gentleman, upon essay taken of my fitness for the use of 
his studies, undertakes within one seven years, to send me forth, 
no less furnished with arts, languages and grounds of theorical 
divinity, than the carefullest tutor in the strictest college of either 
university. Which that he might assuredly perform, to prevent 
the danger of any mutable thoughts in my parents, or myself, he 
desired mutual bonds to be drawn betwixt us. The great charge 
of my father, (whom it pleased God to bless with twelve children) 
made him the more apt to yield to so likely a project for a younger 
son. There, and now were all the hopes of my future life upon 
blasting. The indentures were preparing, the time was set, my 
suits were addressed for the journey. What was the issue I O 
God, thy providence made and found it. Thou knowest how sin- 
cerely and heartily, in those my young years a , I did cast myself 
upon thy hands ; with what faithful resolution, I did in this par- 
ticular occasion resign myself over to thy disposition, earnestly 
begging of thee in my fervent prayers, to order all things to the 
best ; and confidently waiting upon thy will for the event. Cer- 

4 Mr. Pelset.] More probably Pelsant, of the Leicestershire family of that 
name ; several members of it held preferments in the county. 
a Anno yEtatis 15. 


tainly, never did I in all my life more clearly roll myself upon the 
Divine Providence, than I did in this business ; and it succeeded 

It fell out at this time, that my elder brother having some 
occasions to journey unto Cambridge, was kindly entertained 
there, by Mr. Nathaniel Gilby 8 , fellow of Emanuel college, who, 
for that he was born in the same town with me, and had con- 
ceived some good opinion of my aptness to learning, inquired dili- 
gently concerning me ; and hearing of the diversion of my father's 
purposes from the university, importunately dissuaded from that 
new course, professing to pity the loss of so good hopes. My 
brother, partly moved with his words, and partly won by his own 
eyes, to a great love, and reverence of an academical life, return- 
ing home, fell upon his knees to my father, and after the report 
of Mr. Gilby's words, and his own admiration of the place, earn- 
estly besought him, that he would be pleased to alter that so pre- 
judicial a resolution, that he would not suffer my hopes to be 
drowned in a shallow country-channel ; but that he would revive 
his first purposes for Cambridge ; adding in the zeal of his love, 
that if the chargeableness of that course were the hinderance, he 
did there humbly beseech him, rather to sell some part of that 
land, which himself should in course of nature inherit, than to 
abridge me of that happy means to perfect my education. 

No sooner had he spoken these words than my father no less 
passionately condescended ; not without a vehement protestation, 
that whatsoever it might cost him, I should (God willing) be sent 
to the university. Neither were those words sooner out of his 
lips, than there was a messenger from Mr. Pelset knocking at 
the door, to call me to that fairer bondage, signifying, that the 
next day he expected me, with a full dispatch of all that business. 
To whom my father replied, that he came some minutes too late ; 
that he had now otherwise determined of me ; and with a re- 
spective message of thanks to the master, sent the man home 
empty, leaving me full of the tears of joy for so happy a chnn^v. 
Indeed I had been but lost, if that project had succeeded ; as it 
well appeared in the experience of him who succeeded in that 
room, which was by me thus unexpectedly forsaken. O (;<<!. h<>\\ 
\\.is I then taken up with a thankful acknowledgment, and joyful 
admiration of thy gracious providence over me ! 

* Nathaniel Gilby.'] Son of the preceding Anthony Gilby, whom he 
succeeded as vicar of Ashby. 


And now I lived in the expectation of Cambridge ; whither ere 
long I happily came, under Mr. Gilby's tuition, together with my 
worthy friend Mr. Hugh Cholmley 6 , who, as we had been partners 
of one lesson from our cradles, so were we now for many years 
partners of one bed. My two first years were necessarily charge- 
able, above the proportion of my father's power, whose not very 
large cistern, was to feed many pipes besides mine. His weari- 
ness of expense was wrought upon by the counsel of some unwise 
friends, who persuaded him to fasten me upon that school as 
master, whereof I was lately a scholar. Now was I fetched 
home with an heavy heart ; and now this second time had mine 
hopes been nipped in the blossom, had not God raised me up an 
unhoped benefactor, Mr. Edmund Sleigh 7 of Derby (whose pious 
memory I have cause ever to love and reverence). Out of no 
other relation to me, save that he married my aunt, pitying my 
too apparent dejectedness, he voluntarily urged, and solicited my 
father for my return to the university, and offered freely to con- 
tribute the one half of my maintenance there, till I should attain 
to the degree of master of arts, which he no less really and 
lovingly performed. The condition was gladly accepted ; thither 
was I sent back with joy enough, and ere long, chosen scholar of 
that strict and well ordered college. 

By that time I had spent six years there, now the third year 
of my bachelorship should at once both make an end of my main- 
tenance, and in respect of standing, gave me a capacity of fur- 
ther preferment in that house, were it not that my country ex- 
cluded me, for our statute allowed but one of a shire to be fellow 
there, and my tutor being of the same town with me, must there- 
fore necessarily hold me out. But, O my God, how strangely 
did thy gracious providence bring this business about ! I was now 
entertaining motions of remove. A place was offered me in the 
island of Guernsey, which I had in speech and chase. It fell out 
that the father of my loving chamberfellow, Mr. Cholmley, a 
gentleman that had likewise dependance upon the most noble 
Henry earl of Huntingdon, having occasion to go to York, unto 
that his honourable lord, fell into some mention of me. That 
good earl (who well esteemed my fathers service) having belikely 

6 Hugh Cholmley.'] Probably of the family of Chomley of Bransby. 

7 Edmund SleighJ] Of Derby and Little Ireton, of a good family, which 
became extinct at the death, in 1679, of Sir Samuel Sleigh, of Ash and Etvvall 
in Derbyshire, and of Gray's Inn, London, knight. 



heard some better words of me than I could deserve, made ear- 
nest inquiry after me, what were my courses ; what my hopes ; 
and hearing of the likelihood of my removal, professed much 
dislike of it ; not without some vehemence, demanding why I 
was not chosen fellow of that college, wherein by report I 
received such approbation. Answer was returned that my coun- 
try debarred me ; which being filled with my tutor, whom his 
lordship well knew, could not by the statute admit a second. 
The earl presently replied, that if that were the hinderance he 
would soon take order to remove it ; whereupon his lordship pre- 
sently sends for my tutor Mr. Gilby unto York, and with proffer 
of large conditions of the chaplainship in his house, and assured 
promises of better provisions, drew him to relinquish his place 
in the college to a free election. No sooner was his assent signi- 
fied, than the days were set for the public (and indeed exquisite) 
examination of the competitors. By that time two days of the 
three allotted to this trial were past, certain news came to us of 
the unexpected death 8 of that incomparably religious and noble 
earl of Huntingdon, by whose loss my then disappointed tutor 
must necessarily be left to the wide world unprovided for. Upon 
notice thereof I presently repaired to the master of the college, 
Mr. Dr. Chaderton 9 , and besought him to tender that hard con- 
dition to which my good tutor must needs be driven if the election 
proceeded ; to stay any farther progress in that business ; and to 
leave me to my own good hopes wheresoever, whose youth ex- 
posed me both to less needs, and more opportunities of provision. 
Answer was made me, that the place was pronounced void how- 
ever, and therefore that my tutor was divested of all possibility 
of remedy ; and must wait upon the providence of God for his 
disposing elsewhere, and the election must necessarily proceed 
the day following. Then was 1 with a cheerful unanimity chosen 
into that society, which if it had any equals, I dare say had none 
beyond it, for good order, studious carriage, strict government, 
austere piety ; in which I spent six or seven years more with 
such contentment, as the rest of my life hath in vain striven t 

8 Death.] 15Q5. 

9 Dr. Chaderton.] Laurence Chaderton was the first master of Emannel 
College, having been appointed by the founder. Sir Walter Mildmay. lit 
was one of the four divines for the Conference at Hampton Court, and one of 
the Translators of the Bible, lit-, with other Cambridge divines, trans 
from Chronicles to Canticles inclusive. lie lived till 


yield. Now was I called to public disputations often, with no ill 
success ; for never durst I appear in any of those exercises of 
scholarship, till I had from my knees looked up to heaven for a 
blessing, and renewed my actual dependence upon that divine 
hand. In this while two years together was I chosen to the 
rhetoric lecture in the public schools, where I was encouraged 
with a sufficient frequence of auditors ; but finding that well ap- 
plauded work somewhat out of my way, not without a secret 
blame of myself for so much excursion, I fairly gave up that 
task in the midst of those poor acclamations to a worthy succes- 
sor Dr. Dod, and betook myself to those serious studies, which 
might fit me for that high calling whereunto I was destined, 
wherein after I had carefully bestowed myself for a time, I took 
the boldness to enter into sacred orders ; the honour whereof 
having once attained, I was no niggard of that talent which my 
God had entrusted to me, preaching often as occasion was offered, 
both in country villages abroad, and at home in the most awful 
auditory of the university. 

And now I did but wait where and how it would please my 
God to employ me. There was at that time a famous school 10 
erected at Tiverton in Devon, and endowed with a very large 
pension, whose goodly fabric was answerable to the reported 
maintenance ; the care whereof, was by the rich and bountiful 
founder Mr. Blundel, cast principally upon the then lord chief 
justice Popham *. That faithful observer having great interest in 
the master of our house, Dr. Chaderton, moved him earnestly 
to commend some able, learned, and discrete governor to that 
weighty charge, whose action should not need to be so much as 
his oversight. It pleased our master out of his good opinion to 
tender this condition unto me, assuring me of no small advan- 
tages, and no great toil, since it was intended the main load of 
the work should lie upon other shoulders. I apprehended the 
motion worth the entertaining. In that severe society our times 
were stinted, neither was it wise or safe to refuse good offers. 
Doctor Chaderton carried me to London, and there presented me 
to the lord chief justice with much testimony of approbation. 

10 Famous school.'] Founded by Peter Blundell, clothier, a native of the 
place, in 1599. An account of the school was privately printed by Benjamin 
Incledon, of Pilton, in Devonshire, which was reprinted in 1804 by order of 
the feoffees. 

1 Popham^] Sir John Popham. 

T 2 


The judge seemed well apayed with the choice. I promised 
acceptance, he the strength of his favour. No sooner had I 
parted from the judge, than in the street a messenger presented 
me with a letter, from the right virtuous and worthy lady (of 
dear and happy memory) the lady Drury 3 of Suffolk, tendering 
the rectory of her Halsted 3 then newly void, and very earnestly 
desiring me to accept of it. Dr. Chaderton observing in me some 
change of countenance, asked me what the matter might be. I 
told him the errand, and delivered him the letter beseeching his 
advice; which when he had read. u Sir," (quoth I) "methinks 
God pulls me by the sleeve, and tells me it is his will I should 
rather go to the east than to the west." " Nay " (he answered) 
" I should rather think that God would have you go westward, 
for that he hath contrived your engagement before the tender of 
this letter, which therefore coming too late may receive a fair 
and easy answer." To this I besought him to pardon my dis- 
sent, adding, that I well knew that divinity was the end whereto 
1 was destined by my parents, which I had so constantly pro- 
posed to myself, that I never meant other, than to pass through 
this western school to it ; but I saw that God who found me 
ready to go the farther way about, now called me the nearest and 
directest way to that sacred end. The good man could no fur- 
ther oppose, but only pleaded the distaste which would hereupon 
be justly taken by the lord chief justice, whom I undertook fully 
to satisfy ; which I did * with no great difficulty, commending to 
his lordship in my room, my old friend and chamber-fellow Mr. 
Cholmley, who finding an answerable acceptance disposed himself 
to the place ; so as we two, who came together to the university, 
now must leave it at once. 

Having then fixed my foot at Halsted, I found there a dan- 
gerous opposite to the success of my ministry, a witty and bold 
atheist, one Mr. Lilly, who by reason of his travails, and abili- 
ties of discourse and behaviour, had so deeply insinuated himself 
into my patron, sir Robert Drury, that there was small hopes 
(during his entireness) for me to work any good upon that noble 

2 Lady Drury.'] Anne, eldest daughter of Sir Nicholas Bacon, of Red- 
grave, the first baronet of England. 

8 Halsted.] Now Hawsted : he was instituted December 2, 1601. 

4 Which I did.] He resigned on the same day on which he had accepted 
the appointment. Sir John Popham, however, did not appoint Cholmley in 
his room, but Samuel Butler. 


patron of mine ; who by the suggestion of this wicked detractor 
was set off from me before he knew me. Hereupon (I confess) 
finding the obduredness and hopeless condition of that man, I 
bent my prayers against him, beseeching God daily, that he would 
be pleased to remove by some means or other, that apparent hin- 
derance of my faithful labours ; who gave me an answer accord- 
ingly. For this malicious man going hastily up to London, to 
exasperate my patron against me, was then and there swept 
away by the pestilence, and never returned to do any farther 

Now the coast was clear before me, and I gained every day of 
the good opinion and favourable respects of that honourable gen- 
tleman and my worthy neighbours. Being now therefore settled 
in that sweet and civil country of Suffolk, near to St. EdmundV 
Bury, my first work was to build up my house which was then 
extremely ruinous ; which done, the uncouth solitariness of my 
life, and the extreme incommodity of that single house-keeping, 
drew my thoughts after two years to condescend to the necessity 
of a married estate, which God no less strangely provided for me. 
For walking from the church on Monday in the Whitsun-week, 
with a grave and reverend minister, Mr. Grandidge, I saw a 
comely modest gentlewoman standing at the door of that house, 
where we were invited to a wedding-dinner, and enquiring of that 
worthy friend whether he knew her, " Yes," (quoth he) " I know 
her well, and have bespoken her for your wife." When I fur- 
ther demanded an account of that answer, he told me, she was 
the daughter of a gentleman whom he much respected, Mr. 
George Winniff 5 of Bretenham ; that out of an opinion had of the 
fitness of that match for me, he had already treated with her 
father about it, whom he found very apt to entertain it, advising 
me not to neglect the opportunity ; and not concealing the just 
praises of the modesty, piety, good disposition, and other virtues 
that were lodged in that seemly presence, I listened to the mo- 
tion as sent from God ; and at last upon due prosecution happily 
prevailed, enjoying the comfortable society of that meet help for 
the space of forty-nine years. 

I had not passed two years in this estate when my noble friend 
sir Edmund Bacon 6 , with whom I had much intireness, came to 

6 Winniff.~] Or Wenyeve. The bishop's eldest son, Robert, was christened at 
Hawsted on December 26, 1605. 
6 Sir Edmund Bacon.'] Brother to lady Drury. 


me, and earnestly solicited me for my company in a journey by 
him projected to the Spa in Ardenna 7 , laying before me the safety, 
the easiness, the pleasure, and the benefit of that small extrava- 
gance, if opportunity were taken at that time, when the earl of 
Hertford 8 passed in embassy to the arch-duke Albert of Bruxells. 
I soon yielded, as for the reasons by him urged, so especially for 
the great desire I had to inform myself ocularly of the state and 
practice of the Romish church ; the knowledge whereof might 
be of no small use to me in my holy station. Having therefore 
taken careful order for the supply of my charge, with the assent 
and good allowance of my nearest friends, I entered into this 
secret voyage 9 . 

7 In Ardenna.'] In the forest of Ardennes. 

8 Earl of HertfcrdJ] Edward Seymour, earl of Hertford, son of the 
Protector duke of Somerset, and celebrated for his marriage with lady 
Katharine Grey. The embassy in 1 605 was special, to confirm a peace ; and the 
earl, who was generally thought to be master of more ready money than any 
nobleman in England, resolved to make a splendid appearance, and to spend 
10,000/. besides his allowance. 

9 This secret voyage.] See Bishop Hall's Epistles, Decad. i. epist. 5. A 
report of some observations in my TYavel. 

I give an extract or two from this letter of matters not comprehended in 
the text. 

" All civil occurrences ; as what fair cities, what strange fashions, enter- 
tainments, dangers, delights we found, are fit for other ears, and winter 
evenings : what I noted as a divine, within the sphere of my profession, my 
paper shall not spare, in some part, to report. 

" Along our way, how many churches saw we demolished ! Nothing left, 
but rude heaps, to tell the passenger, there had been both devotion and hos- 
tility. O ! the miserable footsteps of war, besides bloodshed, ruin, and deso- 
lation ! Fury hath done that there, which covetousness would do with us : 
would do, but shall not : the truth within shall save the walls without. And, 
to speak truly, whatever the vulgar exclaim, idolatry pulled down those walls ; 
not rage. If there had been no Hollander to raze them, they should have 
fallen alone ; rather than hide so much impiety under their guilty roof. 
These are spectacles, not so much of cruelty, as justice : cruelty of man, justice 
of God. 

" But, which I wondered at, churches fall, and Jesuits' colleges rise every 
where : there is no city, where these are not either rearing, or built. Whence 
cometh this ? Is it, for that devotion is not so necessary, as policy ? Those 
men, as we say of the fox, fare best, when they are most cursed. None, so 
much spited of their own ; none, so hated of all ; none, so opposed by ours : 
and yet, these ill weeds grow. Whosoever lives long, shall see them feared 
of their own, which now hate them : shall see these seven lean kine devour 
all the fat beasts, that feed on the meadows of Tiber. I prophesy, as Pharaoh 
dreamed : the event shall justify my confidence. [" At 


We waited some days at Harwich for a wind, which we hoped 
might waft us over to Dunkirk, where our ambassador had lately 
landed ; but at last having spent a day, and half a night at sea, 
we were forced for want of favour from the wind, to put in at 
Queenborough, from whence coasting over the rich and pleasant 
county of Kent, we renewed our shipping at Dover, and soon 
landing at Calais, we passed after two days by waggon to the 
strong towns of Graveling, and Dunkirk, where I could not but 
find much horror in myself to pass under those dark and dreadful 
prisons, where so many brave Englishmen had breathed out their 
souls in a miserable captivity. From thence we passed through 
Winnoxburgh, Ipre, Gaunt, Courtray, to Bruxells, where the 

" At Brussells I saw some English women profess themselves vestals ; with 
a thousand rites, I know not whether more ridiculous, or magical. Poor 
souls ! they could not be fools enough at home. It would have made you to 
pity, laugh, disdain, I know not which most, to see by what cunning slights 
and fair pretences, that weak sex was fetched into a wilful bondage : and, if 
those two can agree, willingly constrained to serve a master, whom they must 
and cannot obey : whom they may neither forsake for their vow, nor can 
please for their frailty. What follows hence ? Late sorrow, secret mischief, 
misery irremediable. Their forwardness for will-worship shall condemn our 
coldness for truth 

f ' At Ghent, a city that commands reverence for age, and wonder for great- 
ness, we fell upon a Capuchin novice, which wept bitterly, because he was 
not allowed to be miserable. His head had now felt the razor ; his back, the 
rod : all that laconical discipline pleased him well ; which another, being 
condemned to, would justly account a torment. What hindered, then ? 
Piety to his mother would not permit this, which he thought piety to God : 
He could not be a willing beggar, unless his mother must beg unwillingly. 
He was the only heir of his father ; the only stay of his mother. The com- 
fort of her widowhood depended on this her orphan ; who now, naked, must 
enter into the world of the Capuchins, as he came first into this ; leaving his 
goods to the division of the fraternity : the least part whereof should have 
been hers, whose he wished all. Hence those tears, that repulse. I pitied 
his ill-bestowed zeal; and rather wished, than durst teach him, more wisdom. 
These men for devout, the Jesuits for learned and pragmatical, have engrossed 
all opinions from other orders. O hypocrisy ! No Capuchin may take, or 
touch silver : for these are, you know, the quintessence of Franciscan spirits. 
This metal is as very an anathema to these, as the wedge of gold to Achan : 
at the offer whereof, he starts back, as Moses from the serpent : yet he car- 
ries a boy with him, that takes and carries it ; and never complains of either 
metal or measure. I saw, and laughed at it ; and, by this open trick of 
hypocrisy, suspected more, more close. How could I choose ? while, com- 
monly, the least appears of that which is loathsome in appearance, much more 
in nature. At Namur, on a pleasant and steep hill-top, we found one, that 
was termed a married hermit ; approving his wisdom above his fellows, that 
could make choice of so cheerful and sociable a solitariness." 


ambassador had newly sate down before us. That noble gentle- 
man in whose company I travelled, was welcomed with many kind 
visitations. Amongst the rest there came to him an English gen- 
tleman, who having run himself out of breath in the inns of court, 
had forsaken his country, and therewith his religion, and \\a-> 
turned both bigot and physician, residing now in Bruxells. This 
man, after few interchanges of compliment with sir Edmund Bacon, 
fell into an hyperbolical predication of the wonderful miracles 
done newly * by our lady at Zichem, or Sherpen heavell, that is 
Sharp hill ; by Lipsius called Aspricollis ; the credit whereof whun 
that worthy knight wittily questioned, he avowed a particular 
miracle of cure wrought by her upon himself. I coming into the 
room in the midst of this discourse (habited not like a divine, 
but in such colour and fashion as might best secure my travel) 
and hearing my countryman's zealous and confident relations, at 
last asked him this question, " Sir," (quoth I) " Put case this 
report of yours be granted for true, I beseech you teach me what 
difference there is betwixt these miracles which you say are 
wrought by this lady, and those which were wrought by Vespasian, 
by some vestals, by charms and spells ; the rather for that I have 
noted, in the late published report of these miracles, some patients 
prescribed to come upon a Friday, and some to wash in such a 
well before their approach; and divers other such charm-like 
observations." The gentleman not expecting such a question 
from me, answered, " Sir, I do not profess this kind of scholarship, 
but we have in the city many famous divines, with whom if it 
would please you to confer, you might sooner receive satisfaction." 
I asked whom he took for the most eminent divine of that 
place : he named to me father Costerus 8 , undertaking that he 

1 Wonderful miracles done newly. ~] At Sichem, a small town in Brabant, 
between Aerschot and Diest, and seated on the Demer, was an old church, 
repaired by the archdukes Albert and Isabella, called by .the natives " Scherpen- 
heuwel," by the French Notre Dame de Mont-aigu, and in Latin Sacellum Diva 
Virginis Aspricollis. In 1G05, the year before his death, Justus Lipsius gave 
a long account of the nova beneficia et admiranda operated by the miracle- 
working image there preserved, and he dedicated his book to the archduchess 
Isabella. At his death he bequeathed to the image his silver pen and his 
furred robe, whereupon some one wrote : 

" Sensit homo frigere suae miracula Divae, 

Crassaque pro calido stragula thure dedit." 

2 Costerus."] Franciscus Costerus, Provincial in the Netherlands, afterward^ 
general of the order at Rome. He was at this time in his 75th year. He 
died in 1619. 


would be very glad to give me conference, if I would be pleased to 
come up to the Jesuits college. I willingly yielded. In the 
afternoon the forward gentleman prevented his time to attend 
me to the father, (as he styled him,) who (as he said) was 
ready to entertain me with a meeting. I went alone up with 
him ; the porter shutting the door after me, welcomed me 
with a Deo gratias. I had not stayed long in the Jesuits hall, 
before Costerus came in to me, who after a friendly salutation, 
fell into a formal speech of the unity of that church, out of which 
is no salvation, and had proceeded to lose his breath, and labour, 
had not I (as civilly as I might) interrupted him with this short 
answer ; " Sir, I beseech you mistake me not. My nation tells 
you of what religion I am. I come not hither out of any doubt 
of my professed belief, or any purpose to change it, but moving a 
question to this gentleman, concerning the pretended miracles of 
the time, he pleased to refer me to yourself for my answer, which 
motion of his I was the more willing to embrace, for the fame 
that I have heard of your learning and worth ; and if you can 
give me satisfaction herein, I am ready to receive it." Hereupon 
we settled to our places, at a table in the end of the hall, 
and buckled to a farther discourse. He fell into a poor and 
unperfect account of the difference of divine miracles and dia- 
bolical ; which I modestly refuted : from thence he slipped into 
a cholerick invective against our church, which (as he said) 
could not yield one miracle; and when I answered, that in 
our church, we had manifest proofs of the ejection of devils by 
fasting and prayer, he answered that if it could be proved, that 
ever any devil was dispossessed in our church, he would quit his 
religion. Many questions were incidentally traversed by me; 
wherein I found no satisfaction given me. The conference was 
long and vehement ; in the heat whereof, who should come in 
but father Baldwin 3 , an English Jesuit, known to me, as by face 
(after I came to Brussels) so much more by fame. He sate down 
upon a bench at the further end of the table, and heard no small 
part of our dissertation, seeming not too well apaid, that a gentle- 
man of his nation, (for still I was spoken to in that habit, by the 
stile of dominatio vestra) should depart from the Jesuits college 

3 Father Baldwin.] William Baldwin, a native of Cornwall, at first professor 
of theology at Louvain, and vice-prefect of the English Jesuit mission in the 
Netherlands ; afterwards rector of the English seminary at St. Omer. He 
died September 28, 1632, aged 69. 


no better satisfied. On the next morning therefore he sends the 
same English physician to my lodging with a courteous compel- 
lation, professing to take it unkindly, that his countryman should 
make choice of any other, to confer with, than himself, who 
desired both mine acquaintance and full satisfaction. Sir Ed- 
mund Bacon, in whose hearing the message was delivered, gave 
me secret signs of his utter unwillingness to give way to my fur- 
ther conferences, the issue whereof (since we were to pass further, 
and beyond the bounds of that protection) might prove dangerous. 
I returned a mannerly answer of thanks to father Baldwin ; but 
for any further conference, that it were bootless. I could not 
hope to convert him, and was resolved he should not alter HK>, 
and therefore both of us should rest where we were. 

Departing from Brussels we were for Namur, and Liege. In 
the way we found the good hand of God, in delivering us from 
the danger of free-booters, and of a nightly entrance (amidst a 
suspicious convoy) into that bloody city. Thence we came to the 
Spadane waters, where I had good leisure to add a second cen- 
tury of meditations 4 to those 1 had published before my journey. 
After we had spent a just time at those medicinal wells, we 
returned to Liege, and in our passage up the river Mosa 5 , I had 
a dangerous conflict with a Sorbonist, a prior of the Carmelites, 
who took occasion by our kneeling at the receipt of the eucha- 
rist, to persuade all the company of our acknowledgment of a 
transubstantiation. I satisfied the cavil, shewing upon what 
ground * this meet posture obtained with us. The man grew 
furious upon his conviction, and his vehement associates began to 
join with him, in a right down railing upon our church, and ivli- 
gion. I told them they knew where they were : for me, I had 
taken notice of the security of their laws, inhibiting any argu- 
ment held against their religion established, and therefore stood 
only upon my defence, not casting any aspersion upon theirs, but 
ready to maintain our own ; which though I performed in as fair 
terms as I might, yet the choler of those zealots was so moved 
that the paleness of their changed countenances began to threaten 

4 Century of Meditations. ,] See " Meditations and Vows," century the third, 
dedicated to sir Edmund Bacon. Bp. Hall's Works, vol. i. p. 37, 8. edit. 
1634. fol. 

* Mosa.'] The Maas. 

6 Upon what yround.~] Stc the Rubrics subjoined to the order for Adminis- 
tration of the Holy C'oiiiimiinoii, in the Book of Common Pra 


some perilous issue, had not sir Edmund Bacon, both by his eye, 
and by his tongue, wisely taken me off. I subduced myself 
speedily from their presence, to avoid further provocation : the 
prior began to bewray some suspicions of my borrowed habit, and 
told them, that himself had a green satin suit once prepared for 
his travels into England, so as I found it needful for me to lie 
close at Namur ; from whence travelling the next day towards 
Brussels in the company of two Italian captains, seignior Ascanio 
Negro and another whose name I have forgotten : they enquiring 
into our nation and religion, wondered to hear that we had any 
baptism or churches 7 in England. The congruity of my Latin, 
(in respect of their perfect barbarism) drew me and the rest into 
their suspicion, so as I might overhear them muttering to each 
other, that we were not the men we appeared. Straight the one 
of them boldly exprest his conceit, and together with this charge, 
began to enquire of our condition. I told them that the gentle- 
man he saw before us, was the grandchild of that renowned Bacon, 
the great chancellor of England, a man of great birth and quality, 
and that myself, and my other companions, travelled in his attend- 
ance to the Spa, from the train, and under the privilege of our 
late ambassador ; with which just answer I stopped their mouths. 
Returning through Brussels we came down to Antwerp, the 
paragon of cities ; where my curiosity to see a solemn procession 
on St. John Baptist's day might have drawn me into danger 
(through my willing unreverence 8 ) had not the hulk of a tall 
Brabanter, behind whom 1 stood in a corner of a street, shadowed 

7 Baptism or churches.'] Compare above, Life of Whitgift, vol. iii. pp. 618- 
621, and note. 

8 Willing unreverence^] When Dr. Edward Pocock, the great oriental 
scholar, was on his return from Constantinople, in the year 1640, during 
some stay which he made at Genoa, there was (as he would often tell his 
friends) " on a certain day, a religious procession, which went through the 
streets with all the ceremonial pomp, that is usual on such occasions. And 
as he stood in a convenient place, to take a view of it, he was surprised 
with the discourse of some persons, at a little distance, who talked in Arabic. 
They were a couple of slaves in chains, who being confident that nobody 
could understand the language they spake in, expressed their opinions of 
what they saw with all manner of freedom. And as they rallied the pageantry 
they beheld, with a great deal of wit, so from it they took occasion to ridicule 
Christianity itself, and to load it with contempt. So unhappy has the church 
of Rome been in her practices on the Christian religion : for whilst to serve 
some worldly designs, she hath laboured to engage the minds of the vulgar 
sort by empty shows and superstitious solemnities, she hath by those corrupt 


me from notice. Thence down the fair river of Scheld, we came 
to Flushing, where upon the resolution of our company to stay 
some hours, I hasted to Middleburgh to see an ancient college. 
That visit lost me my passage ; ere I could return, I might see 
our ship under sail for England. The master had with the wind 
altered his purpose, and called aboard with such eagerness, that 
my company must either away, or undergo the hazard of too 
much loss. I looked long after them in vain, and sadly returning 
to Middleburgh waited long, for an inconvenient and tempestuous 

After some year and half, it pleased God unexpectedly to con- 
trive the change of my station 9 . My means were but short at 
Halsted ; yet such as I often professed, if my then patron would 
have added but one ten pounds by year, (which I held to be the 
value of my detained due) I should never have removed. One 
morning as I lay in my bed, a strong motion was suddenly 
glanced into my thoughts of going to London. I rose and 
betook me to the way. The ground that appeared of that pur- 
pose, was to speak with my patron sir Robert Drury, if by 
occasion of the public preachership of St. Edmunds Bury, then 
offered me upon good conditions, I might draw him to a willing 
yieldance of that parcel of my due maintenance ', which was kept 
back from my not over-deserving predecessor. Who hearing my 
errand dissuaded me from so ungainful a change, which had it 

additions, exposed what is infinitely rational, wise and good, to the laughter 
and reproach of infidels." Twell's Life ofPocock, p. 18, prefixed to Pocock's 
Theological Works, vol. i. Compare also above,Lt/e ofBilney, vol. ii. p. I7,note. 

9 The change of my station.'] See Epistles, Decad. 1. Epist. 9. " I conjecture 
he did not much reside here (at Hawsted) ; for during his time there are not 
above two years in the register of the same hand. While he did reside, he 
preached three times a week. Till within a few years, there was (as I am in- 
formed by a gentleman who has seen it) in the parsonage-house, a plate of 
lead with his motto, Imum nolo ; Summum nequeo ; Quiesco. Adopted, I 
suppose, when he first settled here, and expressive of a mind, not totally 
unambitious, yet content : and it is probable, if his situation here had been 
comfortable, he would have lived and died in the same obscurity with his 
predecessors and successors in this rectory." Cullum's History of Hawsted, 
1784, p. 65. 

1 My due maintenance.] " Upon his return, he found not that satisfaction 
which he expected in this place ; his patron, sir Robert Drury, refusing to 
restore to the rectory about ten pounds a year, and insisting, as tradition 
reports, upon his acceptance of a modus for the herbage of the park." Cul- 
lum's History of Hawsted, p. 65. 


been to my sensible advantage, he should have readily given way 
unto, but not offering me the expected encouragement of my con- 
tinuance ; with him I stayed and preached on the Sunday fol- 
lowing. That day sir Robert Drury, meeting with the lord 
Denny 2 , fell belike into the commendation of my sermon. That 
religious and noble lord had long harboured good thoughts con- 
cerning me, upon the reading of those poor pamphlets which I 
had formerly published: and long wished the opportunity to 
know me. To please him in this desire, sir Robert willed me 
to go and tender my service to his lordship, which I modestly 
and seriously deprecated ; yet upon his earnest charge went to 
his lordship's gate, where I was not sorry to hear of his absence. 
Being now full of cold and distemper in Drury-lane 3 , I was 
found out by a friend, in whom I had formerly no great interest, 
one Mr. Gurrey 4 , tutor to the earl of Essex. He told me how 
well my Meditations were accepted at the prince's court (p. 
Henry) ; and earnestly advised me to step over to Richmond, and 
preach to his highness. I strongly pleaded my indisposition 
of body, and my inpreparation for any such work, together with 
my bashful fears, and utter unfitness for such a presence. My 
averseness doubled his importunity ; in fine, he left me not till 
he had my engagement to preach the Sunday following at 
Richmond. He made way for me to that awful pulpit, and 
encouraged me by the favour of his noble lord the earl of Essex. 
I preached : through the favour of my God, that sermon was not 
so well given as taken ; in so much as that sweet prince signified 
his desire to hear me again the Tuesday following ; which done, 
that labour gave more contentment than the former ; so as that 
gracious prince, both gave me his hand and commanded me to 
his service. My patron seeing me (upon my return to London) 
looked after by some great persons, began to wish me at home, 
and told me that some or other would be snatching me up. I 
answered it was in his power to prevent. Would he be pleased 
to make my maintenance but so competent as in right it should 
be, I would never stir from him. Instead of condescending, it 

" Lord Denny. .] Sir Edward Denny of Waltham, created lord Denny, 27th 
October, 1604, and earl of Norwich, 24th October, 1626. He died without 
issue, in 1630. 

3 Drury-lane'] Where was the town house of the Drury family, which gave 
its name to that locality. 

1 Mr. Gurrey.'] Thomas Gurrey, M.A., one of the prebendaries of Wolver- 


pleased him to fall into an expostulation of the rate of com- 
petencies, affirming the variableness thereof according to our own 
estimation, and our either raising or moderating the causes of 
our expences. I showed him the insufficiency of my means : 
that I was forced to write books to buy books : shortly, some 
harsh and unpleasing answer so disheartened me that I resolved 
to embrace the first opportunity of my remove. 

Now whilst I was taken up with these anxious thoughts, a 
messenger (it was sir Robert Wingfield of Northampton's son) 
came to me from the lord Denny, (now earl of Norwich) my 
after most honourable patron, entreating me from his lordship to 
speak with him. No sooner came I thither, than after a glad 
and noble welcome, I was entertained with the earnest offer of 
Waltham. The conditions were like the mover of them, free 
and bountiful. I received them, as from the munificent hand of 
my God ; and returned full of the cheerful acknowledgments of 
a gracious providence over me. Too late now did my former 
noble patron relent, and offer me those terms which had before 
fastened me for ever. I returned home happy in a new master, 
and in a new patron ; betwixt whom I divided myself and my 
labours, with much comfort and no less acceptation. 

In the second year of mine attendance on his highness, when 
I came for my dismission from that monthly service, it pleased 
the prince to command me a longer stay: and at last mi no 
allowed departure, by the mouth of sir Thomas Challonner, his 
governor, to tender unto me a motion of more honour and favour 
than I was worthy of; which was, that it was his highness 1 plea- 
sure and purpose, to have me continually resident at the court as 
a constant attendant, whilst the rest held on their wonted vicissi- 
tudes ; for which purpose his highness would obtain for me such 
preferments as should yield me full contentment. I returned my 
humblest thanks, and my readiness to sacrifice myself to the ser- 
vice of so gracious a master 5 , but being conscious to myself of my 
unanswerableness to so great expectation, and loth to forsake so 
dear and noble a patron, who had placed much of his heart upon 
me, I did modestly put it off, and held close to my \Valtham ; 
where in a constant course I preached a long time, (as I had done 
also at Halstead before) thrice in the week ; yet never durst I 
climb into the pulpit, to preach any sermon, whereof I had not 
before in my poor and plain fashion, pen n- d < very word in tin- 
5 So yracious a master.] Prince Henry died (*th November, 1612. 


same order wherein I hoped to deliver it, although in the expres- 
sion I listed not to be a slave to syllables. 

In this while my worthy kinsman, Mr. Samuel Burton, arch- 
deacon of Glocester, knowing in how good terms I stood at court, 
and pitying the miserable condition of his native church of Wol- 
verhampton, was very desirous to engage me in so difficult and 
noble a service as the redemption of that captivated church. For 
which cause he importuned me to move some of my friends, to 
solicit the dean of Windsor 6 , (who by an ancient annexation 7 is 
patron thereof,) for the grant of a particular prebend, when it 
should fall vacant in that church. Answer was returned me, 
that it was fore promised to one of my fellow chaplains. I sate 
down without further expectation. Some year or two after, 
hearing that it was become void, and meeting with that fellow 
chaplain of mine ; I wished him much joy of the prebend. He 
asked me if it were void : I assured him so ; and telling him of 
the former answer delivered to me in my ignorance of his engage- 
ment, wished him to hasten his possession of it. He delayed not. 
When he came to the dean of Windsor, for his promised dis- 

(i Dean of Windsor] Most probably Anthony Maxey, who was dean from 
1612 to 1618. His predecessor was Giles Thompson, who had been appointed 
in 1602. 

7 An ancient annexation.] The deanery of Wolverhampton is one of the most 
ancient ecclesiastical foundations in England, dating from 996. It was con- 
firmed by successive sovereigns. Edward II. granted to many of his free 
chapels, amongst which this of Wolverhampton is named, exemption from 
all ordinary jurisdiction, with many other privileges. In 1479, Edward IV. 
annexed the college, or free chapel, of Wolverhampton to the chapel of Wind- 
sor, so that the dean of St. George's, at Windsor, should be dean of the free 
chapel of Wolverhampton and prebendary of the first prebend. This grant 
was confirmed by act of parliament. 

When, in the first year of Edward VI., collegiate churches, free chapels, &c., 
were dissolved, the chapel of St. George, at Windsor, was excepted, but that 
of Wolverhampton was seized by the crown. On the 2nd of March, 1553, 
shortly before his death, Edward VI. granted it to John Dudley, duke of 
Northumberland, who was attainted in the same year, and by queen Mary it 
was again annexed to St. George's chapel, at Windsor. This annexation was 
confirmed by Elizabeth, and also by James in the eighteenth year of his 
reign, when De Dominis was dean. In the eighth of Henry VIII., the 
manor and lordship of Wolverhampton were leased by the then dean, John 
Harman (or Vessey), to Richard Wrottesley, Esq., and James Leveson, gent., 
at the rent of 38/., and it has ever since been leased at the same rate. In 
1801, sir William Pulteney was the lessee, and the lease now belongs to his 
heirs. Until the late act for abolishing peculiars, the collegiate church was 
subject to no power but that of the sovereign, and, under it, to the perpetual 
visitation of the keeper of the great seal. 


patch, the dean brought him forth a letter from the prince, 
wherein he was desired, and charged to reverse his former engage- 
ment (since that other chaplain was otherwise provided for) and 
to cast that favour upon me. I was sent for, (who least thought 
of it) and received the free collation of that poor dignity. It was 
not the value of the place, (which was but nineteen nobles per 
annum) that we aimed at, but the freedom of a goodly church, 
(consisting of a dean and eight prebendaries competently endowed) 
and many thousand souls lamentably swallowed up by wilful 
recusants, in a pretended fee-farm 8 for ever, O God, what an 
hand hadst thou in the carriage of this work ! when we set foot 
in this suit (for another of the prebendaries joined with me) we 
knew not wherein to insist, nor where to ground a complaint, 
only we knew that a goodly patrimony was by sacrilegious con- 
veyance detained from the church. But in the pursuit of it such 
marvellous light opened itself unexpectedly to us, in revealing of 
a counterfeit zeal, found in the ashes of that burned house of a 
false register ; in the manifestation of rasures, and interpolations, 
and misdates of unjustifiable evidences, that after many years suit, 
the wise and honourable lord chancellor Ellesmere 9 upon a full 
hearing, adjudged these two sued-for prebends, clearly to be 
returned to the church, untill by common law, they could (if pos- 
sibly) be revicted. Our great adversary sir Walter Leveson 10 , 

8 A pretended fee-farm."] " The farming of benefices was the ordinary prac- 
tice in those days," (Henry VIII.) (" see Fox, Acts, &c. vol. iii. p. 167,) and 
must not be confounded with fee-farming, which seems to have crept in 
shortly afterwards. The latter system is explained to have been a permanent 
arrangement, or commutation, and was bitterly inveighed against by Latimer. 
This plain-spoken preacher did not scruple to ascribe it to the machinations 
of Satan, ' What an unreasonable devil is this ? He provides a great while 
beforehand for the time that is to come. He hath brought up now of late 
the most monstrous kind of covetousness that ever was heard of. He hath 
in vented fee-farming of benefices; and all to decay this office of preaching ; 
insomuch that when any man hereafter shall have a benefice, he may go 
where he will for any house he shall have to dwell upon, or any glebe land to 
keep hospitality withal ; but he must take up a chamber in an ale-house, and 
there sit to play at tables all the day. A goodly curate ! " Sixth Sermon 
before king Edward VI. 1549. Cranmer's Rtmaina, ed. Jenkyns, i. 57, note. 

9 Lord chancellor Ellesmere.] It may be remarked here, that this judge's 
family is now merged in that of the defendant, against whom bishop Hall 
makes such strong charges : Lord Ellesmere's very title is now revived in the 
person of a lineal descendant of sir Walter Leveson. 

10 Sir Walter Leveson.'] In the twelfth year of his reign, James I. granted 
the fee of the hundred of Seiston, in Staffordshire, to sir Walter Leveson, knt. 


finding it but loss and trouble to struggle for litigious sheaves, 
came off to a peaceable composition with me of 40. per annum 
for my part, whereof ten should be to the discharge of my stall 
in that church, till the suit should by course of common law be 
determined. We agreed upon fair wars. The cause was heard 
at the king's bench barr : when a special verdict was given for 
us. Upon the death of my partner in the suit, (in whose name 
it had now been brought) it was renewed ; a jury empannelled 
in the county ; the foreman (who had vowed he would carry it 
for sir Walter Leveson howsoever) was before the day, stricken 
mad, and so continued ; we proceeded with the same success we 
formerly had ; whilst we were thus striving, a word fell from my 
adversary, that gave me intimation, that a third dog would per- 
haps come in, and take the bone from us both ; which I finding 
to drive at a supposed concealment *, happily prevented, for I 

The family of Leveson had acquired, at Wolverhampton, great riches by the 
wool trade, then called the staple, and the dealers in it merchants. At the 
Reformation church lands were sold at a small price, and the title being then 
precarious, few persons were willing to become purchasers ; but the family of 
Leveson, having money and wishing well to the Reformation, bought many 
of these lands, as Trentham, Lillishul, &c. In queen Anne's time, a part of 
the estates was sold by another Walter Leveson, to Newport, earl of Bradford, 
which part afterwards passed to the Pulteney family. One of the Gowers of 
Stittenham, in Yorkshire, married the heiress of the elder branch of the 
Levesons, took the name, and seated himself at Trentham ; from him the 
property has passed to his descendant, the present duke of Sutherland. 

1 A supposed concealment^] "When monasteries were dissolved, and the 
lands thereof, and afterwards colleges, chaunteries and fraternities were all 
given to the crown, some demesnes here and there pertaining thereunto, 
were still privily retained, and possessed by certain private persons, or corpo- 
rations, or churches. This caused the queen (Elizabeth] when she under- 
stood it, to grant commissions to some persons to search after these conceal- 
ments, and to retrieve them to the crown. But it was a world to consider, 
what unjust oppressions of the people, and the poor, this occasioned by 
some griping men that were concerned therein. For under the pretence of 
executing commissions for inquiry to be made for these lands concealed, they, 
by colour thereof, and without colour of commission, contrary to all right, 
and to the queen's meaning and intent, did intermeddle and challenge lands 
of long time possessed by church wardens, and such-like, upon the cha- 
ritable gifts of predecessors, to the common benefit of the parishes .... 
Further they attempted to make titles to lands, possessions, plate, and goods, 
belonging to hospitals, and such-like places, used for maintenance of poor 
people ; with many such other unlawful attempts and extortions." Strype's 
Annals of the Reformation, vol. ii. p. 209. See also Strype's Life of Parker, 
p. 368, 69. 405. 489. 



presently addressed myself to his majesty, with a petition for the 
renewing the charter of that church ; and the full establishment 
of the lands, rights, liberties, thereto belonging : which I easily 
obtained from those gracious hands. Now sir Walter Leveson, 
seeing the patrimony of the church so fast and safely settled : and 
misdoubting what issue those his crazy evidences would find at 
the common law, began to incline to offers of peace, and at last 
drew him so far, as that he yielded to those too many conditions, 
not particularly for myself, but for the whole body of all those 
prebends which pertained to the church ; first that he would be 
content to cast up that fee-farm, which he had of all the patri- 
mony of that church, and disclaiming it, receive that which he 
held of the said church by lease, from us the several prebendaries, 
for term, whether of years, or (which he rather desired) of lives. 
Secondly, that he would raise the maintenance of every prebend, 
(whereof some were but forty shillings, others three pounds, 
others four, &c.) to the yearly value of thirty pounds to each 
man, during the said term of his lease : only for a monument of 
my labour and success herein, I required that my prebend might 
have the addition of ten pounds per annum, above the fellows. 
We were busily treating this happy match for that poor church ; 
sir Walter Leveson was not only willing but forward ; the then 
dean Mr. Antonius de Dominis 2 , archbishop of Spalata, gave both 
way and furtherance to the dispatch ; all had been most happily 
ended, had not the scrupulousness of one or two of the number, 
deferred so advantageous a conclusion. In the mean while sir 
Walter Leveson dies, leaves his young orphan ward to the king ; 
all our hopes were now blown up : an office was found of all those 
lands ; the very wonted payments were denied, and I called into 
the court of wards, in fair likelihood to forego my former hold, 
and yielded possession : but there, it was justly awarded by the 
lord treasurer, then master of the wards, that the orphan could 
have no more, no other right than the father. I was therefore 
left in my former state, only upon public complaint of the hard 
condition wherein the orphan was left, I suffered myself to be 
over-intreated, to abate somewhat of that evicted composition ; 
which work having once firmly settled, in a just pity of the mean 
provision, if not the destitution of so many thousand souls, and a 

2 De Dominis.] See p. 93, ante. He was dean of Windsor from 1618 to 


desire, and care, to have them comfortably provided for in the 
future, I resigned up the said prebend to a worthy preacher, 
Mr. Lee, who should constantly reside there, and painfully 
instruct that great and long neglected people ; which he hath 
hitherto performed with great mutual contentment and happy 

Now during this 22 years which I spent 3 at Waltham ; thrice 

3 Which I spent.] To this period we may apply an interesting account 
given of his manner of spending his time, in a letter to his patron, lord 

"Every day is a little life; and our whole life is but a day repeated: 
whence it is, that old Jacob numbers his life by days ; and Moses desires to 
be taught this point of holy arithmetic, ' to number ' not his years, but 
' his days.' Those therefore that dare lose a day, are dangerously prodigal ; 
those that dare mispend it, desperate. We can teach others by ourselves : 
let me tell your lordship how I would pass my days, whether common or 
sacred; and that you, or whosoever others, overhearing me, may either 
approve my thriftiness, or correct my errors. 

" When sleep is rather driven away than leaves me, I would ever awake 
with God. My first thoughts are for him : if my heart be early seasoned 
with his presence, it will savour of him all day after. While my body is 
dressing, not with an effeminate curiosity, nor yet with rude neglect, my 
mind addresses itself to her ensuing task, bethinking what is to be done, and 
in what order ; and marshalling, as it may, my hours with my work. That 
done, after some meditation, I walk up to my masters and companions, my 
books ; and sitting down amongst them, with the best contentment, I dare 
not reach forth my hand to salute any of them till I have first looked up to 
heaven, and craved favour of him, to whom all my studies are duly referred ; 
without whom, I can neither profit nor labour. After this, out of no over 
great variety, I cull forth those, which may best fit my occasions : wherein 
I am not too scrupulous of age. Sometimes I put myself to school to one 
of those ancients, whom the church hath honoured with the name of Fathers; 
whose volumes, I confess not to open, without a secret reverence of their 
holiness and sanctity : sometimes, to those later doctors, which want nothing 
but age to make them classical : always, to God's Book. That day is lost, 
whereof some hours are not improved in those divine monuments. Others I 
turn over, out of choice ; these out of duty. Ere I can have sat unto weari- 
ness, my family, having now overcome all household distractions, invites 
me to our common devotions ; not without some short preparation. These 
heartily performed, send me up with a more strong and cheerful appetite 
to my former work, which I find made easy to me by intermission and 
variety. One while mine eyes are busy; another while my hand; and some- 
times my mind takes the burthen from them both. One hour is spent 
in textual divinity; another in controversy; histories relieve them both. 
When the mind is weary of others' labours, it begins to undertake her own. 

u 2 


was I commanded and employed abroad by his majesty in public 

First in the attendance of the right honourable earl of Carlile 4 , 
(then lord viscount Doncaster) who was sent upon a noble 
embassy 5 , with a gallant retinue into France ; whose entertain- 
ment there, the annals of that nation will tell to posterity. In the 
midst of that service was I surprized with a miserable distemper 
of body ; which ended in a diarrhoea biliosa, not without some 
beginnings and further threats of a dissentery : wherewith I was 
brought so low, that there seemed small hope of my recovery. 

Sometimes it meditates and winds up for future use ; sometimes it lays forth 
her conceits into present discourse: sometimes for itself, often for others. 
Neither know I whether it works or plays in these thoughts. I am sure 
no sport hath more pleasure ; no work more use : only the decay of a weak 
body makes me think these delights insensibly laborious. Before my meals 
and after, I let myself loose from all thoughts, and would forget that I ever 
studied. Company, discourse, recreations, are now seasonable and welcome. 
I rise not immediately from my trencher to my book, but after some inter- 
mission. After my later meal, my thoughts are slight ; only my memory 
may be charged with the task of recalling what was committed to her 
custody in the day ; and my heart is busy in examining my hands and mouth, 
and all other senses, of that day's behaviour. The evening is come : no 
tradesman doth more carefully take in his wares, clear his shop-board, and 
shut his windows, than I would shut up my thoughts, and clear my mind. 
That student shall live miserably, which, like a camel, lies down under his 
burthen. All this done, calling together my family, we end the day with 
God. Such are only common days. 

" But God's day calls for another respect. The same sun arises on this day, 
and enlightens it : yet because that Sun of Righteousness arose upon it, and 
gave a new life unto the world in it, and drew the strength of God's moral 
precept into it ; therefore, justly do we sing with the psalmist, This is the day 
which the Lord hath made. Now, I forget the world, and in a sort, myself: 
and deal, with my wonted thoughts, as great men use, who, at some times of 
their privacy, forbid the access of all suitors. Prayer, meditation, reading, 
hearing, preaching, singing, good conference, are the businesses of this day ; 
which I dare not bestow on any work or pleasure, but heavenly; I hate 
superstition on the one side, and looseness on the other : but I find it hard to 
offend in too much devotion : easy, in profaneness. The whole week is 
sanctified by this day : and according to my care of this, is my blessing on 
the rest." Works, vol. vii. p. 2546. 

4 Earl of Carlile.'] James Hay. He was grandson of Hall's patron, the 
earl of Norwich, to whose barony of Denny he succeeded in 1630. This 
relationship accounts for Lord Carlisle's patronage of Hall. 

' A noble embassy.'] To congratulate Louis XIII. on his marriage with 
Anne of Austria. 


Mr. Peter Moulin 6 (to whom I was beholden for his frequent visi- 
tations) being sent by my lord ambassador, to inform him of my 
estate, brought him so sad news thereof, as that he was much 
afflicted therewith, well supposing his welcome to Waltham could 
not but want much of the heart without me. Now the time of 
his return drew on, Dr. Moulin kindly offered to remove me, 
upon his lordship's departure, to his own house, promising me all 
careful attendance. I thanked him, but resolved, if I could but 
creep homewards to put myself upon the journey. A litter was 
provided, but of so little ease, that Simeon's penitential lodging, 
or a malefactor's stocks, had been less penal. I crawled down 
from my close chamber into that carriage, In qua mdebaris mi/ii 
efferri, tanquam in sandapila, as Mr. Moulin wrote to me after- 
ward ; that misery had I endured in all the long passage from 
Paris to Dieppe, being left alone to the surly muleteers, had not 
the providence of my good God brought me to St. Germains, 
upon the very setting out of those coaches, which had stayed 
there upon that morning's entertainment of my lord ambassador. 
How glad was I that I might change my seat, and my company. 
In the way, beyond all expectation, I began to gather some 
strength ; whether the fresh air, or the desires of my home 
revived me, so much, and so sudden reparation ensued, as was 
sensible to myself, and seemed strange to others. Being shipped 
at Dieppe the sea used us hardly, and after a night, and a great 
part of the day following, sent us back well wind-beaten, to that 
bleak haven whence we set forth, forcing us to a more pleasing 
land passage, through the coasts of Normandy and Picardy; 
towards the end whereof, my former complaint returned upon me, 
and landing with me, accompanied me to, and at my long desired 
home. In this my absence it pleased his majesty, graciously, to 
confer upon me the deanry of Worcester 7 , which being promised 
to me before my departure, was deeply hazarded whilst I was out 
of sight, by the importunity and underhand working of some 
great ones. Dr. Field 8 , the learned and worthy dean of Glocester, 
was by his potent friends put into such assurances of it, that I 

6 Peter Moulin.'] Pierre du Moulin, the elder. 

7 Deanry of Worcester.'] In the year 16 16. Le Neve's Fasti, p. 310. 

8 Dr. Field.'] Richard Field, appointed dean of Gloucester in 1609. He 
died 21st November, 1616. It is sufficient to name his celebrated work " Of 
the Church, four books." Fuller calls him " that learned divine, whose memory 
smelleth like a Field the Lord hath blessed." See p. 101, ante. 


heard where he took care for the furnishing that ample house. 
But God fetched it about for me, in that absence and nescience 
of mine ; and that reverend, and better deserving divine, was well 
satisfied with greater hopes ; and soon after exchanged this 
mortal estate, for an immortal and glorious. 

Before I could go down through my continuing weakness, to 
take possession of that dignity, his majesty pleased to design me 
to his attendance into Scotland 9 ; where the great love, and re- 
spect that I found, both from the ministers and people, wrought 
me no small envy, from some of our own. Upon a commonly 
received supposition, that his majesty would have no further use 
of his chaplains, after his remove from Edinborough, (for as 
much as the divines of the country, whereof there is great store 
and worthy choice, were allotted to every station) I easily ob- 
tained, through the solicitation of my ever honoured lord of Car- 
lile, to return with him before my fellows. No sooner was I gone, 
than suggestions were made to his majesty of my over plausible 
demeanour and doctrine to that already prejudicate people, for 
which his majesty, after a gracious acknowledgment of my good 
service there done, called me upon his return to a favourable and 
mild account ; not more freely professing what informations had 
been given against me, than his own full satisfaction, with my 
sincere and just answer; as whose excellent wisdom well saw 
that such winning carriage of mine could be no hinderance to 
those his great designs. At the same time his majesty having 
secret notice, that a letter was coming to me from Mr. W. 
Struther, a reverend and learned divine of Edinborough, con- 
cerning the five points *, then proposed, and urged to the church 
of Scotland, was pleased to impose upon me an earnest charge, 
to give him a full answer in satisfaction to those his modest 
doubts ; and at large to declare my judgment concerning those 
required observations, which I speedily performed with so great 

9 Into Scotland.] See Heylin's Life of Archbishop Laud, p. 735, 789. 

1 The Jive points.'] " Afterwards called the five Articles of Perth. The 
articles at large are to be found in the histories of those times : but in 
short they contained (I) the kneeling at the communion; (2) private com- 
munion at sick people's request; (3) private Baptism; (4) confirmation of 
children; (5) observation of festivals." Memoirs of the Church of Scotland, 
p. 162, A.D. 1717. See also Spotswood's Hist, of the Church of Scotland, 
fol. 539. Heylin's Life of Laud, p. 78. The king's design in these mea- 
sures was to bring the church of Scotland to a nearer conformity with that of 


approbation of his majesty, that it pleased him to command a 
transcript thereof, as I was informed, publicly to be read in their 
most famous university : the effect whereof his majesty vouch- 
safed to signifie afterwards unto some of my best friends, with 
allowance beyond my hopes. 

It was not long after, that his majesty finding the exigence of 
the affairs of the Netherlandish churches to require it, both 
advised them to a synodical decision, and by his incomparable 
wisdom promoted the work. My unworthiness was named for 
one of the assistants of that honourable grave and reverend 
meeting, where I failed not of my best service to that woefully 
distracted church. By that time I had stayed some two months 
there, the unquietness of the nights, in those garrison towns, 
working upon the tender disposition of my body, brought me to 
such weakness through want of rest, that it began to disable me 
from attending the synod, which yet as I might, I forced myself 
unto as wishing that my zeal could have discountenanced my 
infirmity ; wherein the mean time, it is well worthy of my thank- 
ful remembrance, that being in an afflicted and languishing con- 
dition, for a fortnight together with that sleepless distemper, yet 
it pleased God, the very night before I was to preach the Latin 
sermon 2 to the synod to bestow upon me such a comfortable 
refreshing of sufficient sleep, as whereby my spirits were revived, 
and I was enabled with much vigour and vivacity to perform that 
service ; which was no sooner done than my former complaint 
renewed upon me, and prevailed against all the remedies that the 
counsel of physicians could advise me unto ; so as after long 
strife, I was compelled to yield unto a retirement (for the time) 
to the Hague, to see if change of place and more careful attend- 
ance, which I had in the house of our right honourable ambassa- 

2 The Latin sermon.'] See Kale's Golden Remains, p. 381, &c. The best 
account of the proceedings of this far-famed synod of Dort may be found 
in the letters of the ever-memorable John Hales of Eton College, printed in 
his Golden Remains. See particularly the Latin edition of those letters, 
published by Mosheim at Hamburgh, A.D. 1724. The Canons of this synod 
are inserted in the Corpus et Syntagma Confessionum ; and the Acta were 
printed at Leyden 1620 in fol. : see also Limborch's Life of Episcopius, 
Fuller's Church Hist, book 10, p. 7786. Heylin's Life of Laud, p. 79, &c. 
Heylin's Hist, of the Presbyterians, p. 401, &c. Hickman's Animadversions 
on Dr. Heylin, p. 405 22. The magnificent copy of the Acta Synodi Dor- 
drechtensis which belonged to James I., bound in crimson velvet, embroidered 
in gold, is now preserved in the old Royal Library in the British Museum. 


dor, the lord Carleton 3 (now viscount Dorchester) might recover 
me. But when notwithstanding all means, my weakness increased 
so far, as that there was small likelihood left of so much strength 
remaining, as might bring me back into England, it pleased his 
gracious majesty by our noble ambassador's solicitation, to call 
me off, and to substitute a worthy divine Mr. Dr. Goade * in my 
unwillingly forsaken room. Returning by Dort, I sent in my sad 
farewel to that grave assembly, who by common vote sent to me 
the president of the synod, and the assistants, with a respective 
and gracious valediction ; neither did the deputies of my lords 
the states neglect (after a very respectful compliment sent from 
them to me by Daniel Heinsius) to visit me ; and after a noble 
acknowledgment of more good service from me than I durst own, 
dismissed me with an honourable retribution, and sent after me a 
rich medal of gold, the portraiture of the synod, for a precious 
monument of their respects to my poor endeavours, who failed 
not whilest I was at the Hague, to impart unto them my poor 
advice concerning the proceeding of that synodical meeting. 
The difficulties of my return in such weakness were many and 
great; wherein, if ever, God manifested his special providence 
to me, in over-ruling the cross accidents of that passage, and after 
many dangers and despairs, contriving my safe arrival. 

After not many years settling at home, it grieved my soul, to 
see our own church begin to sicken * of the same disease which 
we had endeavoured to cure in our neighbours. Mr. Montague's * 
tart and vehement assertions of some positions, near of kin to 
the Remonstrants of Netherland, gave occasion of raising no 
small broil in the church. Sides were taken, pulpits every where 
rang of these opinions ; but parliament took notice of the divi- 
sion, and questioned the occasioner. Now as one that desired to 

8 Lord Carleton.'] Sir Dudley Carlton, created lord Carlton in 1628; vis- 
count Dorchester, 25th July, 1628. He died in 1631. 

4 Mr. Dr. Goade.'} Thomas Goad, S.T.P., chantor of St. Paul's in London, 
prebendary of Hilton, in the collegiate church of Wolverhampton, and chap- 
lain to archbishop Abbot. 

* Begin to sicken.'] See Fuller's Church History, book 10, p. 119, &c. 
Heylin's Life of Laud, p. 124 7. Also bishop Hall's Way of Peace in the 

five busy Articles of Arminius. Parliamentary Hist. 6, 7. 

* Mr. Montague's.] Richard Mountague, or Montagu, who was not con- 
nected with the noble family of that name, was the son of Laurence Mon- 
tague, minister of Dorney, in Buckinghamshire : he was bishop successively 
of Chichester in 1628, and of Norwich in 1638. He died in 164 1. 


do all good offices to our dear and common mother, I set my 
thoughts on work, how so dangerous a quarrel might be happily 
composed ; and finding that mis-taking was more guilty of this 
dissention than mis-believing ; (since it plainly appeared to me, 
that Mr. Montague meant to express, not Arminius 7 , but bishop 
Overall, a more moderate and safe author, however he sped in 
delivery of him ;) I wrote a little project of pacification 8 , wherein 
I desired to rectify the judgment of men, concerning this misap- 
prehended controversy, shewing them the true parties in this un- 
seasonable plea; and because bishop Overall went a midway, 

7 To express, not Arminius^] On this subject Mountague shall best speak for 
himself. It would be well if his wise and noble sentiments could make 
their due impression upon many shallow controversialists in our own days. 

" I disavow the name and title of Arminian. I am no more Arminian 
than they are Gomarians ; not so much in all probability. They delight, it 
seemeth, to be called after men's names ; for anon they stick not to call 
themselves Calvinists ; which title, though more honourable than Gomarian 
or Arminian, I am not so fond of, or doting upon, but I can be content to 
leave it unto those that affect it, and hold it reputation to be so instiled. I 
am not, nor would be accounted willingly Arminian, Calvinist, or Lutheran 
(names of division) but a Christian. For my faith was never taught by the 
doctrine of men. I was not baptized into the belief, or assumed by grace 
into the family of any of these, or of the pope. I will not pin my belief unto 
any man's sleeve, carry he his head ever so high ; not unto St. Augustin, or 
any ancient father, nedum unto men of lower rank. A Christian I am, and 
so glory to be j only denominated of Christ Jesus my Lord and Master, by 
whom I never was as yet so wronged, that I would relinquish willingly that 
royal title, and exchange it for any of his menial servants. And further yet 
I do profess, that I see no reason why any member of the Church of England, 
a church every way so transcendant unto that of Leyden and Geneva, should 
lowt so low as to denominate himself of any of the most eminent amongst 
them .... 

"Again for Arminianism, I must and do protest before God and his 
angels, idque in verbo sacerdotis, the time is yet to come that ever I read 
word in Arminius. The course of my studies was never addressed to modern 
epitomizers : but from my first entrance to the study of divinity, I balked 
the ordinary and accustomed by-paths of Bastingius's Catechism, Fenner's 
Divinity, Bucanus' Common Places, Trelcatius, Polanus, and such-like ; and 
betook myself to Scripture the rule of faith, interpreted by antiquity, the 
best expositor of faith, and applier of that rule : holding it a point of dis- 
cretion, to draw water, as near as I could to the well-head, and to spare 
labour in vain, in running further off, to cisterns and lakes. I went to 
enquire, when doubt was, of the days of old, as God himself directed me : and 
hitherto I have not repented me of it." Mountague's Appello Ctssarem, p. 10. 

8 A little project of pacificationJ] The way of Peace in the five busy articles 
commonly known by the name of Arminius. 


betwixt the two opinions which he held extreme, and must needs 
therefore somewhat differ from the commonly-received tenet in 
these points, I gathered out of bishop Overall on the one side, 
and out of our English divines at Dort on the other, such common 
propositions concerning these five busy articles, as wherein both 
of them are fully agreed ; all which being put together, seemed 
unto me to make up so sufficient a body of accorded truth, that 
all other questions moved hereabouts, appeared merely super- 
fluous, and every moderate Christian might find where to rest 
himself, without hazard of contradiction. These I made bold by 
the hands of Dr. Young 9 the worthy dean of Winchester, to 
present to his excellent majesty, together with a humble motion of 
a peaceable silence to be enjoined to both parts, in those other 
collateral, and needless disquisitions : which if they might befit 
the schools of academical disputants, could not certainly sound 
well from the pulpits of popular auditories. Those reconciliatory 
papers fell under the eyes of some grave divines on both parts. 
Mr. Montague professed that he had seen them, and would 
subscribe to them very willingly; others that were contrarily 
minded, both English, Scotish, and French divines, profered 
their hands to a no less ready subscription ; so as much peace 
promised to result out of that weak and poor enterprise, had 
not the confused noise of the misconstructions of those who 
never saw the work, (crying it down for the very name^s sake) 
meeting with the royal edict of a general inhibition, buried it in 
a securfe silence. I was scorched a little with this flame which I 
desired to quench; yet this could not stay my hand from 
thrusting itself into an hotter fire. 

Some insolent Komanists (Jesuits especially) in their bold dis- 
putations (which in the time of the treaty of the Spanish match ', 
and the calm of that relaxation were very frequent,) pressed 

Dr. Young.] John Young, installed 8th July, 16 16. 

1 The Spanish match.] " We have little news, either of the great business, 
or of any other, though messengers come weekly out of Spain : and I con- 
ceive that matters are yet very doubtful. The new chapel for the Infanta 
goes on in building, and our London papists report that the angels descend 
every niyht and build part of it. Here hath been lately a conference betwcn 
one Fisher a jesuite and one Sweete on the one side ; and Dr. Whyte and 
Dr. Featly on the other. The question was of the antiquity and succession of 
the Church. It is said we shall have it printed." Sir Henry Bourgchier to 
Abp. Ussher, then bishop of Meath, dated July U, 1623. Ussher'sLi/e and 
Letters, p. 89. See also Wren's Parentalia, p. 27. 


nothing so much, as a catalogue of the professors of our religion 
to be deduced from the primitive times, and with the peremptory 
challenge of the impossibility of this pedigree dazzled the eyes of 
the simple ; whilst some of our learned men 2 , undertaking to 

2 Some of our learned men.'] The question which the priests and Jesuits 
continually ingeminated was, " Where was your church before Luther ? " 
Of " The learned men," of whose mode of reply to this interrogatory the 
bishop, not without solid reason, expresses his disapprobation ; two I appre- 
hend, were persons of no less dignity than the English and Irish primates of 
that day : the former, Dr. George Abbot, in his book of the Visibility of the 
Church, and the latter, Dr. James Ussher, in his De Ecclesiarum Christianarum 
successione et statu. Abbot, as Dr. Heylin tells us, could not find any visi- 
bility of the Christian church, but by tracing it, as well as he could, from the 
Berengarians to the Albigenses, from the Albigenses to the Wickliffists, from 
the Wickliffists unto the Hussites, and from the Hussites unto Luther and 
Calvin (Life of Laud, p. 53), whereas as bishop Hall observes, "Valdus, 
Wickliffe, Luther, did never go about to frame a new church, which was not, 
but to cleanse, restore, reforme that church which was." 

" Hence may be answered that which Rome brings as her Achilles, 
touching the succession and visibility of the Protestants* church and doc- 
trine in all ages since Christ : for if theirs (that of Rome) have had such 
succession and visibility, it is impossible to say that the Protestants' church 
has not had them also ; the former (the church of Rome) only adding more 
articles for a Christian to believe, which the latter will not embrace as 
needful. . . . ' Protestants ' (says Stapleton, Fortress of Faith, at the end of 
Bede's Hist. fol. 47 b.) 'have many things less than papists; they have 
taken away many things which papists had; they have added nothing.' 
And here, therefore, to my understanding, the Romanists require of us 
what lies on their part to prove. For, we, denying, in the succession of 
bishops from Cranmer, and Warham, even to Augustine, and so of the 
Britons, ever any one to have held the points which we differ in, to have 
been points of faith, in that degree of necessity in which they are now 
required ; and, for proof, citing not only the Apostles', Nicene, and Athana- 
sian Creeds, but even that of Peckham, which we find so to differ from that 
late one, set out by Pius IV. as we cannot but say, it is unjust in them to 
press us to a profession in religion further than our ancestors were required ; 
so, they on the contrary, affirming all those holy bishops preceding, not only 
to have believed those articles which themselves now do, but also that they 
did require them of others with the like necessity in which they are now 
required, ought certainly to prove what they thus boldly affirm : which when 
they have done, truly for my part I shall think fit to yield ; but till they do 
it, let them cease from proclaiming us heretics, who hold no other than the 
ancient faith at first delivered unto us. 

" But this, as a point rather dogmatical for divines, than historical, the 
subject I undertook, I shall not here further wade into." Twisden's Histo- 
rical Vindication, p. 198. 


satisfy so needless and unjust a demand, gave, as I conceived, 
great advantage to the adversary. In a just indignation to see 
us thus wronged by mis-stating the question betwixt us, as if we, 
yielding ourselves of an other church, originally and fundamentally 
different, should make good our own erection upon the ruins, 
yea, the nullity of theirs, and well considering the infinite and 
great inconveniences, that must needs follow upon this defence 3 , 
I adventured to set my pen on work; desiring to rectify the 
opinions of those men, whom an ignorant zeal had transported, to 
the prejudice of our holy cause, laying forth the damnable cor- 
ruptions of the Roman church, yet making our game of the outward 
visibility thereof, and by this means putting them to the probation 
of those newly obtruded corruptions which are truly guilty of the 
breach betwixt us ; the drift whereof, being not well conceived, 
by some spirits *, that were not so wise as fervent, I was suddenly 
exposed to the rash censures of many well affected and zealous 
protestants, as if I had in a remission to my wonted zeal to the 
truth attributed too much to the Roman church, and strengthened 
the adversaries hands and weakened our own. This envy I was 

3 Upon this defence. ~\ The bishop here alludes to the practices and judg- 
ment of Zanchius, Perkins, Whittaker, &c. See The Apologetical Advertise- 
ment. Works, vol. ii. p. 49. 55. part 2. fol. 

4 By some spirits. .] Sanderson, afterwards bishop of Lincoln, in that part 
of the famous Preface to his Sermons, bearing date July 13, 1657, in which 
he shews the advantages which the Puritan writers gave to the Romish party, 
by the unsoundness of their reasonings, and their extreme intolerance ; and 
the much greater progress which popery was making in England towards 
the latter end of the commonwealth through their incapacity, than it had ever 
done before, remarks that "They promoted the interest of Rome and betrayed 
the Protestant Cause, partly by mistaking the question (a very common fault 
among them,) but especially through the necessity of some false principle or 
other, which having once imbibed, they think themselves bound to maintain. 
.... Among those false principles^ it shall suffice for the present to have 
named but this one, That the Church with Rome is no true Church. The dis- 
advantages of which assertion to our cause in the dispute about the visibility 
of the church (besides the falseness and uncharitableness of it) their zeal, or 
prejudice rather, will not suffer them to consider. With what out-cries was 
bishop Hall, good man, (who little dreamt of any peace with Rome) pursued 
by Burton and other hot-spurs, for yielding it a church ! who had made the 
same concession over and over again before he was bishop (as Junius, Rey- 
nolds, and our best controversy writers generally do,) and no notice taken, 
no noise made about it." P. 79, edit. 1689. Or, Christian Institutes, vol. iv. 
p. 571. 


fain to take off by my speedy " Apologetical Advertisement," and 
after that by my " Reconciler 3 ," seconded with the unanimous 
letters of such reverend, learned, sound divines 8 , both bishops and 
doctors, as whose undoubtable authority, was able to bear down 
calumny itself. Which done I did by a seasonable moderation 
provide for the peace of the church, in silencing both my defendants 
and challengers, in this unkind and ill-raised quarrel. 

Immediately before the publishing of this tractate, (which did 
not a little aggravate the envy and suspicion) I was by his 
majesty raised to the bishopric of Exeter 7 , having formerly (with 
much humble deprecation) refused the see of Gloucester earnestly 
proffered unto me. How beyond all expectation it pleased God 
to place me in that western charge ; which (if the duke of 
Buckingham's letters, he being then in France 8 , had arrived but 
some hours sooner) I had been defeated of ; and by what strange 
means it pleased God to make up the competency of that pro- 
vision, by the unthought of addition of the rectory of St. Breok 
within that diocese, if I should fully relate, the circumstances 
would force the confession of an extraordinary hand of God in 
the disposing of those events. 

I entered upon that place, not without much prejudice and 
suspicion on some hands ; for some that sate at the stern of the 
church, had me in great jealousy for too much favour 9 of 
Puritanism. I soon had intelligence who were set over me for 
espials ; my ways were curiously observed and scanned. How- 
ever, I took the resolution to follow those courses which might 
most conduce to the peace and happiness of my new and weighty 
charge ; finding therefore some factious spirits very busy in that 
diocese, I used all fair and gentle means to win them to good 
order ; and therein so happily prevailed that (saving two of that 
numerous clergy, who continuing in their refractoriness fled away 
from censure,) they were all perfectly reclaimed ; so as I had 
not one minister professedly opposite to the anciently received 
orders (for I was never guilty of urging any new impositions *) 

6 My " Reconciler."] See Works, vol. ii. part 2. p. 57 99. 

6 Sound divines.] B. Morton, B. Davenant, Dr. Prideaux, Dr. Primrose. 

7 The bishopric of Exeter] He was elected Nov. 5, and consecrated 
Dec. 23, 1627. 

8 Then in France] In the expedition to the Isle of Rhe. 

9 Too much favour] See Works, vol. i. p. 294. Heylin's Life of Laud, 
p. 54. 

1 Any new impositions] Here is a reflexion, designed, no doubt, to point 


of the church in that large diocese. Thus we went on com- 
fortably together, till some persons of note in the clergy, being 
guilty of their own negligence and disorderly courses, began to 
envy our success ; and finding me ever ready to encourage those 
whom I found conscionably forward and painful in their places, 
and willingly giving way to orthodox and peaceable lectures in 
several parts of my diocese, opened their mouths against me, 
both obliquely in the pulpit, and directly at the court ; complain- 
ing of my too much indulgence to persons disaffected, and my 
too much liberty of frequent lecturings within my charge. The 
billows went so high that I was three several times upon my 
knee to his majesty, to answer these great criminations ; and 
what contestation 1 had with some great lords concerning these 
particulars, it would be too long to report ; only this ; under 
how dark a cloud I was hereupon, I was so sensible, that I 
plainly told the lord archbishop of Canterbury, that rather than I 
would be obnoxious to those slanderous tongues of his misin- 
formers, I would cast up my rochet. I knew I went right ways, 
and would not endure to live under undeserved suspicions. What 
messages of caution I had from some of my wary brethren, and 
what expostulatory letters I had from above, I need not relate. Sure 
I am I had peace, and comfort at home, in the happy sense of that 
general unanimity, and loving correspondence of my clergy ; till 
in the last year of my presiding there, after the synodical oath 2 

against archbishop Laud. It may be but fair then, to see what the arch- 
bishop had to say for himself respecting this charge of imposition, when he 
had the opportunity of being heard, after being ^axed for it, in parliament, 
by one of his bitterest adversaries. 

" In the mean time, since I am the man so particularly shot at, I shall 
answer for myself according to truth ; and with truth which I can legally 
prove, if need be. I have not commanded or enjoined any one thing, cere- 
monial, or other, upon any parochial congregation in England, much less 
upon all, to be either practised, or suffered, but that which is directly com- 
manded by law. And if any inferior ordinary in the kingdom, or any of my 
own officers have given any such command, it is either without my know- 
ledge, or against my direction. And it is well known, I have sharply chid 
some for this very particular. And if my lord " (lord Say) " would have 
acquainted me with any such troubled thoughts of his, I would have given 
him, so far as had been in my power, either satisfaction or remedy." Laud's 
Answer to Lord Say's Speech. Troubles, fyc. p. 499. 

2 The synodical oath.'] The oath contained in the sixth canon of 1640, 
called also the etcetera oath, the object of which was to declare an approba- 
tion of the doctrine and discipline of the church of England, as containing 


was set on foot, (which yet I did never tender to any one 
minister of my diocese) by the incitation of some busy inter- 
lopers of the neighbour county, some of them began to enter 
into an unkind contestation with me, about the election of clerks 
of the convocation ; whom they secretly, without ever acquainting 
me with their desire or purpose (as driving to that end which we 
see now accomplished) would needs nominate and set up in com- 
petition to those, whom I had (after the usual form) recommended 
to them. That they had a right to free voices in that choice, I 
denied not ; only I had reason to take it unkindly, that they 
would work underhand without me, and against me ; professing 
that if they had before hand made their desires known to me, I 
should willingly have gone along with them in their election. It 
came to the poll. Those of my nomination carried it. The 
parliament began. After some hard tugging there, returning 
home upon a recess I was met on the way, and cheerfully 
welcomed with some hundreds. In no worse terms, I left that 
my once dear diocese : when returning to Westminster, I was 
soon called by his majesty (who was then in the north) to a remove 
to Norwich 3 : but how I took the Tower in my way ; and how 
I have been dealt with since my repair hither, I could be lavish 
in the sad report, ever desiring my good God to enlarge my heart 
in thankfulness to him, for the sensible experience I have had 
of his fatherly hand over me, in the deepest of all my afflictions, 
and to strengthen me, for whatsoever other trials he shah 1 be 
pleased to call me unto ; that being found faithful unto the 
death, I may obtain that crown of life, which he hath ordained 
for all those that overcome. 

all things necessary to salvation, " and an avowal to maintain it against both 
papists and puritans. But nothing raised so much noise and clamour as the 
oath required by the sixth canon ; exclaimed against both from the pulpit 
and the press ; reproached in printed pamphlets, and unprinted scribbles ; 
and glad they were to find such an excellent advantage, as the discovering of 
an Sfc. in the body of it did unhappily give them." Heylin's Life of Laud, 
p. 443. The clause in which this unhappy oversight occurred, (for it was 
probably nothing more) stood thus : " Nor will I ever give my consent to 
alter the government of this church by archbishops, bishops, deans and 
archdeacons, &c. as it stands now established, and as by right it ought to 
stand ; nor yet ever to subject it to the usurpations and superstitions of the 
see of Rome." Sparrow's Canons, &c. p. 359, A.D. IC75. 

3 To a remove to Norwich.'] He was elected, November 15, 1641. 



NOTHING could be more plain, than that upon the call of this 
parliament l , and before, there was a general plot and resolution 
of the faction to alter the government of the church especially. 
The height and insolency of some church-governors, as was con- 
ceived, and the ungrounded imposition of some innovations * upon 
the churches both of Scotland and England, gave a fit hint to 
the project. In the vacancy therefore before the summons, and 
immediately after it, there was great working 3 secretly for the 
designation and election as of knights and burgesses, so especially 
(beyond all former use) of the clerks of convocation ; when now 
the clergy were stirred up to contest with, and oppose their dio- 
cesans, for the choice of such men as were most inclined to the 
favour of an alteration. The parliament was no sooner set, than 
many vehement speeches were made against established church- 
government, and enforcement of extirpation both root and branch. 
And because it was not fit to set upon all at once, the resolution 
was to begin with those bishops which had subscribed to the 
canons * then lately published upon the shutting up of the former 
parliament ; whom they would first have had accused of treason ; 

1 This parliament."] The Long Parliament, according to the name which it 
afterwards earned to itself. It began Nov. 3, 16 10. 

3 Innovations.'] See Heylin's Life of Laud, p. 4435, edit. 1671 ; and Hist, 
of Nonconformity, p. 345, or Baxter's Life, &c. p. 369. 

3 There was great working.] " I was indeed sorry to hear, with what par- 
tiality and popular heat elections were carried on in many places ; yet hoping 
that the gravity and discretion of other gentlemen would allay and fix the 
commons in a due temperament, guiding some men's well-meaning zeal by 
such rules of moderation as are best both to preserve and restore the health 
of all states and kingdoms, no man was better pleased with the convening 
of this parliament than myself; who knowing best the largeness of my own 
heart towards my people's good and just contentment, pleased myself most 
in that good and firm understanding, which would hence grow between me 
and my people." Jc6n Easilike ; the Portraiture of his sacred Majesty in his 
Solitudes and Sufferings, chap. i. 

4 To the canons.'] Viz. of 1640. See Sparrow's Collection of Articles, In- 
junctions, Canons, &c. p. 33574. 


but that not appearing feasible, they thought best to indite them s 
of very high crimes and offences against the king, the parliament, 

5 To indite them.'] On the llth March, 1640-1, the commons resolved 
" that for bishops or any other clergyman whatsoever to be in the commission 
of the peace, or to have any judicial power in the star-chamber, or in any 
civil court, is a hindrance to their spiritual function, prejudicial to the com- 
monwealth, and fit to be taken away;" and, on the 1st of May following, a 
bill to that effect passed the commons, and was sent up to the lords, where it 
was read a first time. On that day, bishop Hall (Exeter) delivered the fol- 
lowing admirable speech, which is preserved in his Works, vol. x. p. 70-2, 
and in the Parliamentary History. 

" My lords, 

"This is the strangest bill that I ever heard of, since I was admitted to 
sit under this roof: for it strikes at the very fabric and composition of this 
house ; at the stile of all laws ; and therefore, were it not that it comes from 
such a recommendation, it would not, I suppose, undergo any long consider- 
ation : but, coming to us from such hands, it cannot but be worthy of your 
best thoughts. 

" And, truly, for the main scope of the bill, I shall yield it most willingly, 
that ecclesiastical and sacred persons should not ordinarily be taken up with 
secular affairs. The minister is called vir Dei, a man of God : he may not 
be vir seculi. He may lend himself to them, upon occasion : he may not 
give himself over purposely to them. Shortly, he may not 50 attend worldly 
things, as that he do neglect divine things. This we gladly yield. Matters 
of justice, therefore, are not proper, as an ordinary trade, for our function ; 
and, by my consent, shall be, as in a generality, waved and deserted : which, 
for my part, I never have meddled with, but in a charitable way ; with no 
profit, but some charge to myself, whereof I shall be glad to be eased. Trac- 
tentfabriliafabri j as the old word is. 

" But if any man shall hence think fit to infer that some spiritual person 
may not occasionally be in a special service of his king or country ; and, 
when he is so required by his prince, give his advice in the urgent affairs of 
the kingdom, which I suppose is the main point driven at; it is such an 
inconsequence, as I dare boldly say cannot be made good, either by divinity 
or reason ; by the laws either of God or man : whereas the contrary may be 
proved and enforced by both. 

" As for the grounds of this bill, that the minister's duty is so great, that 
it is able to take up the whole man, and the apostle saith, Tu; iKavog ; who is 
sufficient for these things ? and that he, who warfares to God should not entangle 
himself with this world ; it is a sufficient and just conviction of those, who 
would divide themselves betwixt God and the world, and bestow any main 
part of their time upon secular affairs : but it hath no operation at all upon 
this tenet, which we have in hand that a man dedicate to God, may not so 
much as, when he is required, cast a glance of his eye, or some minutes of 
time, or some motives of his tongue, upon the public business of his king 
and country. Those that expect this from us, may as well, and upon the 
same reason, hold that a minister must have no family at all ; or, if he have 



and kingdom, which was prosecuted with great earnestness bysome 
prime lawyers in the house of commons, and entertained with like 

one, must not care for it : yea, that he must have no body to tend, but be all 

" My lords, we are men of the same composition with others ; and our 
breeding hath been accordingly. We cannot have lived in the world, without 
having seen it, and observed it too : and our long experience and conversa- 
tion, both in men and in books, cannot but have put something into us for 
the good of others : and now, having a double capacity, qua cites, qua eccle- 
siastici, as members of the commonwealth, as ministers and governors of the 
church ; we are ready to do our best service in both. One of them is no way 
incompatible with the other : yea, the subjects of them both are so united 
with the church and commonwealth, that they cannot be severed : yea so, as 
that, not the one is in the other, but the one is the other, is both : so as the 
services which we do upon these occasions to the commonwealth, are insepa- 
rable from our good offices to the church : so that, upon this ground, there is 
no reason of our exclusion 

" But, I fear it is not on some hands, the tender regard of the full scope 
of our calling, that is so much here stood upon, as the conceit of too much 
honour, that is done us, in taking up the room of peers, and voting in this 
high court : for surely, those that are averse from our votes, yet could be 
content, we should have place upon the woolsacks ; and could allow us ears, 
but not tongues. 

" If this be the matter, I beseech your lordships to consider that this 
honour is not done to us, but to our profession ; which whatever we be in our 
several persons, cannot easily be capable of too much respect from your lord- 
ships. Non tibi, sed Isidi ; as he said of old. 

" Neither is this any new grace, that is put upon our calling ; which, if it 
were now to begin, might perhaps be justly grudged to our unworthiness : 
but it is an ancient right and inheritance, inherent in our station : no less 
ancient than these walls, wherein we sit : yea, more : before ever there were 
parliaments, in the magna concilia of the kingdom we had our places. And 
as for my own predecessors, ever since the Conqueror's time I can shew your 
lordships a just catalogue of them, that have sat before me here : and, truly, 
though I have just cause to be mean in mine own eyes, yet why, or wherein, 
there should be more unworthiness in me than the rest, that I should be 
stripped of that privilege which they so long enjoyed, though there were no 
law to hold me here, I cannot see or confess. 

" What respects of honour have been put upon the prime clergy of old, 
both by Pagans, and Jews, and Christians, and what are still both within 
Christendom and without, I shall not need to urge : it is enough to say, this 
of ours is not merely arbitrary; but stands so firmly established by law and 
custom, that I hope it neither will nor can be removed, except you will shake 
those foundations, which 1 believe you desire to hold firm and inviolable. 

-hortly, then, my lords, the church craves no new honour from you: 
and justly hopes you will not be guilty of pulling down the old. As you are 
the eldest sons, and next under his majesty, the honourable patrons of the 


fervency by some zealous lords in the house of peers ; every of 
those particular canons being pressed to the most envious and 
dangerous height that was possible : the archbishop of York 6 , 
aggravating Mr. Maynard's criminations to the utmost, not with- 
out some interspersions of his own. The counsel of the accused 
bishops gave in such a demurring answer as stopped the mouth 
of that heinous indictment. 

When this prevailed not, it was contrived to draw petitions 
accusatory from many parts of the kingdom against episcopal 

church ; so she expects and beseeches you to receive her into your tenderest 
care ; so to order her affairs, that you leave her to posterity in no worse case 
than you found her. 

" It is a true word of Damasus, Ubi mlescit nomen episcopi, omnis status 
perturbatur ecclesies. If this be suffered, the misery will be the church's : the 
dishonour and blur of the act in future ages will be yours. 

" To shut up, therefore, let us be taken off from all ordinary trade of 
secular employments : and, if you please, abridge us of intermeddling with 
matters of common justice : but leave us possessed of those places and pri- 
vileges in parliament, which our predecessors have so long and peaceably 

On the 14th of May the bill was read a second time in the lords, and the 
bishops were zealously defended by Robert Pierrepont, viscount Newark (and 
earl of Kingston), whose speech is given by Fuller. On the 24th the bill 
was in committee, when the bishop of Lincoln (John Williams) spoke at 
great length against it, lord Say and Sele in its favour, and lord Newark 
again spoke on behalf of the bishops. On the 27th the lords desired a con- 
ference with the commons, and on the same day sir Edward Dering brought 
into the commons a bill for the utter abolishing of bishops, deans, pre- 
bendaries, &c. &c., and the second reading was carried at once by 139 to 108. 
On the 3rd and 4th of June further conferences took place between the two 
houses, and on the 3rd of July an impeachment was ordered. Accordingly, 
on the 3rd of August, sergeant Wylde, M.P. for Worcestershire, presented 
articles of impeachment against the following bishops : 

Walter Curie, Winchester. Matthew Wren, Ely. 

Robert Wright, Coventry and Lick- William Roberts, Bangor. 
field. Robert Skinner, Bristol. 

Godfrey Goodman, Gloucester. John Warner, Rochester. 

JOSEPH HALL, Exeter. John Towers, Peterborough. 

John Owen, St. Asaph. Morgan Owen, Llandaff. 

William Pierce, Bath and Wells. William Laud, Canterbury. 

George Coke, Hereford. 

On the 26th of October another conference took place, and on the 10th of 
November the impeached bishops put in their plea. 

6 Archbishop of York.~\ Meaning John Williams, who, however, at this 
time, was only bishop of Lincoln : he was not translated to York till the 4th 
of December following. 

x 2 


government, and the promoters of the petitions were entertained 
with great respects ; whereas the many petitions of the opposite 
part, though subscribed with many thousand hands, were slighted 
and disregarded. Withal, the rabble of London, after their peti- 
tions cunningly and upon other pretences procured, were stirred 
up to come to the houses personally to crave justice both against 
the earl of Strafford first, and then against the archbishop of 
Canterbury, and lastly against the whole order of bishops ; which 
coming at first unarmed were checked by some well-willers, and 
easily persuaded to gird on their rusty swords, and so accoutered 
came by thousands 7 to the houses, filling all the outer rooms, 
offering foul abuses to the bishops as they passed, crying out, no 
bishops, no bishops; and at last, after divers days assembling, 
grown to that height of fury, that many of them, whereof sir 
Richard Wiseman professed (though to his cost 8 ) to be captain, 
came with resolution of some violent courses, insomuch that many 
swords were drawn hereupon at Westminster, and the rout did 
not stick openly to profess that they would pull the bishops in 
pieces. Messages were sent down to them from the lords. They 
still held firm both to the place and their bloody resolutions. It now 
grew to be torch-light. One of the lords, the marquis of Hertford 9 , 
came up to the bishops 1 form, told us that we were in great danger, 
advised us to take some course for our own safety, and being desired 
to tell us what he thought was the best way, counselled us to con- 
tinue in the parliament house all that night ; " for " (saith he) 
" these people vow they will watch you at your going out and will 
search every coach for you with torches, so as you cannot escape." 
Hereupon the house of lords was moved for some order for the 

7 Came by thousands.'] Compare Ic6n Basilike, chap. iv. Upon the Insolency 
of the Tumults. 

8 To his co*/.] It was on the 28th December, 1641, that this disturbance 
took place. An attempt was made to force the abbey, where the regalia, an 
object of plunder, were kept. The servants of the archbishop of York, who 
was still for the time dean of Westminster, drew their swords, and defended 
the church and its contents. Some mounted the roof, and threw down mis- 
siles on the assailants ; the following statement by Baxter is very remark- 
able : " Sir Richard Wiseman leading them [the apprentices and other 
rabble assailants] there was some fray about Westminster Abbey between the 
cavaliers and them, and sir Richard Wiseman was slain by a stone from off the 
abbey walls." Baxter's Life and Times, p. 27. 

9 Marquis of Hertford.] William Seymour, created marquis of Hertford in 
1640 (afterwards, in 1CCO, restored as duke of Somerset); who, when young, 
had married lady Arabella Stuart; see p. 15, ante. 


preventing their mutinous and riotous meetings. Messages were 
sent down to the house of commons to this purpose more than 
once. Nothing was effected : but for the present (for so much 
as all the danger was at the rising of the house) it was earnestly 
desired of the lords that some care might be taken of our safety. 
The motion was received by some lords with a smile. Some other 
lords, as the earl of Manchester *, undertook the protection of the 
archbishop of York and his company (whose shelter I went under) 
to their lodgings ; the rest, some of them by their long stay, 
others by secret and far-fetched passages escaped home. 

It was not for us to venture any more to the house without 
some better assurance. Upon our resolved forbearance, there- 
fore, the archbishop of York sent for us to his lodging at West- 
minster ; lays before us the perilous condition we were in : ad- 
vises for remedy (except we meant utterly to abandon our right, 
and to desert our station in parliament) to petition both his 
majesty and the parliament, that since we were legally called by 
his majesty's writ to give our attendance in parliament, we might 
be secured in the performance of our duty and service against 
those dangers that threatened us ; and withal to protest against 3 
any such acts as should be made during the time of our forced 
absence ; for which he assured us there were many precedents in 

1 Earl of Manchester.'] Henry Montagu, first earl of Manchester, Lord 
Privy Seal. He died November 7, 1642. His son was the well-known par- 
liamentarian general, 

2 To protest against.'] The protest was presented on the 30th of December, 
1641. It was signed by 

John Williams, Archbishop of William Pierce, Bath and Wells. 

York. John Coke, Hereford. 

Thomas Morton, Durham. Matthew Wren, Ely. 

Joseph Hall, Norwich. Robert Skinner, Oxford. 

Robert Wright, Coventry and Lich- George Goodwin, Gloucester, 
field. John Warner, Peterborough. 

John Owen, St. Asaph. Morgan Owen, Llandaff. 

At this time five sees were vacant, viz. 

Worcester, by the death of John Thornborough. 
Lincoln, by the translation of Williams to York. 
Exeter, Hall to Norwich. 

Bristol, Skinner to Oxford. 

Chichester, Duppa to Sarum. 

And on the day of the protest a motion was made that they should not be 
filled up. 


former parliaments, and which if we did not, we should betray the 
trust committed to us by his majesty, and shamefully betray and 
abdicate the due right 3 both of ourselves and successors. To this 
purpose in our presence he drew up the said petition and protes- 
tation, avowing it to be legal, just and agreeable to all former 
proceedings ; and being fair written sent it to our several lodgings 
for our hands ; which we accordingly subscribed, intending yet to 
have had some further consultation concerning the delivering and 
whole carriage of it. But ere we could suppose it to be in any 
hand but his own, the first news we heard was, that there were 
messengers addressed to fetch us into the parliament upon an 
accusation of high treason. For whereas this paper was to have 
been delivered, first to his majesty's secretary, and after perusal 

3 The due right.'] " This is on the hypothesis, that there are three estates, 
lords spiritual and temporal, and commons. Two of them sit in one 
house, and (together] compose one body; the third sit in one house, and 
compose another body. The lords spiritual are excluded : they remonstrate, 
and say a force being put upon a part of the body, the acts of the other part 
are void. This is good reasoning, on the hypothesis : but the hypothesis is 
false. The bishops do not make a third estate, but are part of the general 
baronage which composes the house of lords." Warburton's Remarks on 
Neal's Hist, of the Puritans; Works, vol. xii. p. 393, 4. 

This, no doubt, is correct, according to the views and language of one 
class of constitutional writers : but the authorities are quite as numerous, 
and perhaps (to say the least) quite of as much value, which speak of the 
king as the head, and of three other distinct estates in parliament, (viz. lords 
spiritual, lords temporal, and commons), as constituting the body of the 

Thus Lord Coke, Institutes, vol. iv. cap. 1. "The court of parliament con- 
sisteth of the king's majesty, sitting there as in his royal politic capacity, and 
of the three estates of the realm : one of which," he adds, " represents all the 
commons of the whole realm." Secondly, we may take the title of the form 
of prayer in the liturgy, " to be used yearly upon the fifth day of November ; 
for the happy deliverance of King James I and the three estates of England." 
Thirdly, the conjoint authority in one, of the lord keeper Pickering, and the 
lord treasurer Burghley (A.D. 1 593). " Therefore," says the latter, addressing 
the house of peers, " as was delivered by the lord keeper, her majesty hath 
summarily imparted the same to this assembly, referring the consideration 
thereof to the whole three estates, whereof two are in this place." Cobbett'a 
Parl. Hist., vol. i. p. 806. These may suffice as a specimen. It would be 
easy to cite a great many more. I will not however omit to mention that the 
whole question has been admirably discussed on all its grounds of authority 
and reason by bishop Stillingfleet, in his Ecclesiastical Cases, vol. ii. pp. 373 


by him to his majesty, and after from his majesty to the parlia- 
ment, and for that purpose to the lord keeper, the lord Littleton *, 
who was the speaker of the house of peers ; all these professed 
not to have perused it at all, but the said lord keeper, willing enough 
to take this advantage of ingratiating himself with the house of 
commons and the faction, to which he knew himself sufficiently 
obnoxious, finding what use might be made of it by prejudicate 
minds, reads the same openly in the house of the lords : and when 
he found some of the faction apprehensive enough of misconstruc- 
tion, aggravates the matter as highly offensive, and of dangerous 
consequence ; and thereupon not without much heat and vehe- 
mence, and with an ill preface, it is sent down to the house of 
commons ; where it was entertained hainously, Glynne with a full 
mouth crying it up for no less than an high treason ; and some 
comparing, yea preferring it to the powder plot. 

We poor souls (who little thought that we had done any thing 
that might deserve a chiding) are now called to our knees at the 
bar and charged severally with high treason, being not a little 
astonished at the suddenness of this crimination, compared with 
the perfect innocence of our own intentions, which were only to 
bring us to our due places in parliament with safety and speed 
without the least purpose of any man's offence. But now traitors 
we are in all the haste, and must be dealt with accordingly. For 
on January 5 30, in all the extremity of frost, at eight o'clock in 
the dark evening, are we voted to the Tower ; only two of our 
number 6 had the favour of the Black Rod by reason of their age ; 
which though desired by a noble lord on my behalf, would not be 
yielded, wherein I acknowledge, and bless the gracious providence 
of God ; for had I been gratified, I had been undone both in 
body and purse ; the rooms being strait, and the expence beyond 
the reach of my estate. The news of this our crime and impri- 

4 Lord Littleton.'] Sir Edward Lyttleton, descended from Thomas Lyttleton, 
the youngest son of Sir Thomas Lyttleton, the celebrated judge, and author of 
the "Tenures." He was created Lord Lyttleton of Mounslow, February 18, 
1640. His title became extinct at his death in 1645. The present lord 
Lyttleton (or Lyttelton) is descended from sir William Lyttleton, the eldest 
son of the judge. 

5 January ] An error, probably of a transcriber, for December : it will have 
been seen that the committal took place on December 30, and that bishop 
Hall's letter from the Tower is dated January 24. 

6 Two of our number.'] Morton, of Durham, and Wright, of Coventry and 


sonment soon flew over the city, and was entertained by our well- 
willers with ringing of bells and bonfires ; who now gave us up 
(not without great triumph) for lost men, railing on our perfi- 
diousness, and adjudging us to what foul deaths they pleased. 
And what scurrile and malicious pamphlets were scattered abroad 
throughout the kingdom, and in foreign parts, blazoning our in- 
famy and exaggerating our treasonable practices ! what insulta- 
tions of our adversaries was here ! 


" To my much respected good friend, Mr. H. S. 

" Worthy Sir, 

" You think it strange, that I should salute you from hence ; 
how can you choose, when I do yet still wonder to see myself 
here ? My intentions, and this place are such strangers that I 
cannot enough marvel how they met. But, howsoever, I do in 
all humility kiss the rod wherewith I smart, as well knowing 
whose hand it is that wields it. To that infinite justice who can 
be innocent? but to my king and country never heart was or 
can be more clear ; and I shall beshrew my hand if it shall have 
(against my thoughts) justly offended either ; and if either say 
so, I reply not ; as having learned not to contest with those that 
can command legions. 

u In the mean time it is a kind, but cold compliment, that 
you pity me ; an affection well placed where a man deserves to 
be miserable ; for me I am not conscious of such merit. You 
tell me in what fair terms I stood not long since with the world ; 
how large room I had in the hearts of the best men : but can 
you tell me how I lost it ? Truly I have in the presence of God 
narrowly searched my own bosom ; I have unpartially ransacked 
this fag-end of my life, and curiously examined every step of my 
ways, and I cannot by the most exact scrutiny of my saddest 
thoughts, find what it is that I have done to forfeit that good 
estimation wherewith you say I was once blessed. 

" I can secretly arraign and condemn myself of infinite trans- 

1 A letter.'] This letter is now inserted according to its date. In 
Mr. Pratt's edition of Bishop Hall it is prefixed to the Hard Measure. 


gressions before the tribunal of heaven. Who that dwells in a 
house of clay can be pure in his sight, who charged his angels 
with folly ? ! God, when I look upon the reckonings betwixt 
thee and my soul, and find my shameful arrears, I can be most 
vile in my own sight, because I have deserved to be so in thine ; 
yet even then, in thy most pure eyes, give me leave the whiles, 
not to abdicate my sincerity. Thou knowest my heart desires to 
be right with thee, whatever my failings may have been ; and I 
know what value thou puttest upon those sincere desires, not- 
withstanding all the intermixtures of our miserable infirmities. 
These I can penitently bewail to thee ; but in the mean time, 
what have I done to men ? Let them not spare to shame me 
with the late sinful declinations of my age ; and fetch blushes 
(if they can) from a wrinkled face. 

" Let mine enemies (for such I perceive I have, and those are 
the surest monitors) say what I have offended. For their better 
irritation, my conscience bids me boldly to take up the challenge 
of good Samuel, ' Behold here I am, witness against me before the 
Lord, and before his anointed : Whose oxe have I taken ? or whose 
ass have I taken ? or whom have I defrauded ? whom have I 
oppressed? or of whose hand have I received any bribe to blind 
mine eyes therewith ? and I will restore it to you.'' 

" Can they say, that I bore up the reins of government too 
hard, and exercised my jurisdiction in a rigorous and tyrannical 
way, insolently lording it over my charge ? Malice itself, perhaps, 
would, but dare not speak it ; or if it should, the attestation of 
so numerous and grave a clergy would choak such impudence. 
Let them witness, whether they were not still entertained, with an 
equal return of reverence, as if they had been all bishops with 
me, or I only a presbyter with them ; according to the old rule 
of Egbert archbishop of York, Infra domum, episcopus collegam 
se presbyterorum esse cognoscat. Let them say whether aught here 
looked like despotical ; or sounded rather of imperious command, 
than of brotherly complying ; whether I have not rather from 
some beholders undergone the censure of a too humble remissness, 
as, perhaps, stooping too low beneath the eminence of episcopal 
dignity ; whether I have not suffered as much in some opinions, 
for the winning mildness of my administration, as some others for 
a rough severity ? 

" Can they say (for this aspersion is likewise common) that I 
barred the free course of religious exercises, by the suppression of 


painful and peaceable preachers ? If shame will suffer any man 
to object it, let me challenge him to instance but in one name. 
Nay the contrary is so famously known in the western parts, that 
every mouth will herein justify me. What free admission and 
encouragement, have I always given to all the sons of peace, that 
came with God's message in their mouths? What mis-sug- 
gestions have I waved ! What blows have I borne off in the 
behalf of some of them, from some gain-sayers ? How have I 
often and publicly professed, that as well might we complain of 
too many stars in the sky, as too many orthodox preachers in the 
church ? 

" Can they complain, that I fretted the necks of my clergy, 
with the uneasy yoke of new and illegal impositions ? Let them 
whom I have thus hurt blazon my unjust severity, and write their 
wrongs in marble ; but if, disliking all novel devices, I have held 
close to those ancient rules which limited the audience of our 
godly predecessors ; if I have grated upon no man's conscience 
by the pressure (no not by the tender) of the late oath 8 , or any 
unprescribed ceremony ; if I have freely in the committee, ap- 
pointed by the honourable house of peers, declared my open 
dislike in all innovations, both in doctrine and rites ; why doth 
my innocence suffer ? 

" Can they challenge me as a close and backstair friend to 
Popery or Arminianism, who have in so many pulpits, and so 
many presses, cried down both. Surely the very paper that I 
have spent in the refutation of both these, is enough to stop more 
mouths than can be guilty of this calumny. 

u Can they check me with a lazy silence in my place, with in- 
frequence of preaching ? Let all the populous auditories where I 
have lived witness, whether having furnished all the churches near 
me with able preachers, I took not all opportunities of supplying 
such courses as I could get in my cathedral, and when my tongue 
was silent, let the world say whether my hand were idle. 

" Lastly, since no man can offer to upbraid me with too much 
pomp, which is wont to be the common eye-sore of our envinl 
profession ; can any man pretend to a ground of taxing me (as I 
perceive one of late hath most unjustly done) of too much world- 
lint .>3 ? 

" Surely of all the vices forbidden in the decalogue, there is no 
8 The tale oathJ] The etcetera oath. See note above, p. 302. 


one which my heart upon due examination can less fasten upon 
me than this. He that made it, knows, that he hath put into it 
a true disregard (save only for necessary use) of the world, and all 
that it can boast of, whether for profit, pleasure, or glory. No, 
no ; I know the world too well to doat upon it. Whilst I am in 
it, how can I but use it ? but I never care, never yield to enjoy it. 
It were too great a shame for a philosopher, a Christian, a divine, 
a bishop, to have his thoughts groveling here upon earth ; for 
mine, they scorn the employment, and look upon all these sublu- 
nary distractions (as upon this man's false censure) with no other 
eyes than contempt. 

" And now, sir, since I cannot (how secretly faulty soever) 
guess at my own public exorbitances, I beseech you, where you 
hear my name traduced, learn of my accusers (whose lyncean eyes 
would seem to see farther into me than my own) what singular 
offence I have committed. 

" If, perhaps, my calling be my crime ; it is no other than the 
most holy fathers of the church in the primitive and succeeding 
ages, ever since the apostles, (many of them also blessed martyrs) 
have been guilty of: it is no other than all the holy doctors of the 
church in all generations ever since have celebrated, as most 
reverend, sacred, inviolable : it is no other than all the whole 
Christian world, excepting one small handful of our neighbours 
(whose condition denied them 9 the opportunity of this govern- 
ment) is known to enjoy without contradiction. How safe is it 
erring in such company ! 

" If my offence be in my pen, which hath (as it could) under- 
taken the defence l of that apostolical institution (though with all 
modesty and fair respects to the churches differing from us) I 
cannot deprecate a truth : and such I know this to be : which is 
since so cleared by better hands 2 , that I well hope the better 
informed world cannot but sit down convinced ; neither doubt I 
but that as metals receive the more lustre with often rubbing, this 
truth, the more agitation it undergoes, shall appear every day 
more glorious. Only, may the good Spirit of the Almighty speedily 

9 Condition denied them.'] See Hooker's Preface, chap. ii. 4, or Christian 
Institutes, vol. iv. p. 369. 

1 Undertaken the defence.] viz. in his Episcopacy by divine right, asserted ; 
the Humble Remonstrance ; Defence of the Humble Remonstrance ; Answer to 
Smectymnus, &c. Works, vol. ix. 8vo. 

2 By better hands] Dr. Hammond, archbishop Ussher, &c. 


dispel all those dusky prejudices from the minds of men, which 
may hinder them from discerning so clear a light ! 

" Shortly then, knowing nothing by myself, whereby I have 
deserved to alienate any good heart from me, I shall resolve to 
rest securely upon the acquitting testimony of a good conscience, 
and the secret approbation of my gracious God ; who shall one day 
cause mine innocence to break forth as the morning light, and shall 
give me beauty for bonds ; and for a light and momentaiy afflic- 
tion, an eternal weight of glory. To shut up all, and to surcease 
your trouble ; I write not this, as one that would pump for favour 
and reputation from the disaffected multitude (for I charge you, 
that what passes privately betwixt us, may not fall under common 
eyes) but only with this desire and intention, to give you true 
grounds, where you shall hear my name mentioned with a cause- 
less offence, to yield me a just and charitable vindication. Go 
you on still to do the office of a true friend, yea, the duty of a 
just man ; in speaking in the cause of the dumb, in righting the 
innocent, in rectifying the misguided ; and lastly, the service of a 
faithful and Christian patriot, in helping the times with the best 
of your prayers ; which is the daily task of your much devoted 
and thankful friend, 

" Jos. NORVIC." 

From the Tower, 
Jan. 24, 1641'.] 

Being caged * sure enough in the Tower, the faction had now 
fair opportunities to work their own designs. They therefore 
taking the advantage of our restraint, renew the bill of theirs, 
(which had been twice before rejected since the beginning of 
this session) for taking away the votes of bishops 5 in parliament, 

1641.] That is, 1641-2. 

4 Being caged.'] On January 17, 1641-2, the twelve bishops had sent in 
their answer to the charges against them. 

6 The votes of bishops.'] " How oft was the business of the bishops' enjoying 
their ancient places and undoubted privileges in the house of peers carried 
for them by far the major part of the lords ! Yet, after five repulses, con- 
trary to all order and custom, it was by tumultuary instigations obtruded 
again, and by a few carried when most of the peers were forced to absent 
themselves." Icdn Basilike, chap. ix. Upon the listing and raising armies 
against the king. 


and in a very thin house easily passed it : which once conde- 
scended unto, Iknownot by what strong importunity 6 , his majesty's 
assent 7 was drawn from him thereunto. We now, instead of 
looking after our wonted honour must bend our thoughts upon 
the guarding of our lives, which were with no small eagerness, 
pursued by the violent agents of the faction. Their sharpest wits 
and greatest lawyers were employed to advance our impeachment 
to the height ; but the more they looked into the business, the 
less crime could they find to fasten upon us : insomuch as one of 
their oracles, being demanded his judgment concerning the fact, 
professed to them, they might with as good reason accuse us of 
adultery. Yet still there are we fast, only upon petition to the 
lords obtaining this favour, that we might have counsel assigned 
us ; which after much reluctation, many menaces from the com- 
mons, against any man of all the commoners of England that 
should dare to be seen to plead in this case against the represen- 
tative body of the commons, was granted us. The lords assigned 
us five very worthy lawyers, which were nominated to them by us. 
What trouble and charge it was to procure those eminent and 
much employed counsellors to come to the Tower to us, and to 
observe the strict laws of the place, for the time of their ingress, 
regress, and stay, it is not hard to judge. After we had lien 
some weeks there, however, the house of commons, upon the first 
tender of our impeachment had desired we might be brought to 
a speedy trial, yet now finding belike how little ground they had 
for so high an accusation, they began to slack their pace, and 
suffered us rather to languish under the fear of so dreadful 
arraignment. In so much as now we are fain to petition the 
lords that we might be brought to our trial. The day was set ; 
several summons were sent unto us : the lieutenant had his war- 
rant to bring us to the bar; our impeachment was severally 
read ; we pleaded not guilty, modo et forma, and desired speedy 
proceedings, which were accordingly promised, but not too hastily 
performed. After long expectation, another day was appointed 
for the prosecution of this high charge. The lieutenant brought 
us again to the bar ; but with what shoutings and exclamations 

6 Strong importunity^] This proceeded from the ill-advised judgment of 
some of the king's most confidential friends, and from the queen. See 
Clarendon's History of the Rebellion, b. iv. 

7 Assent.'] The king gave his assent to the bill on February 14, 1641-2. 


and furious expressions of the enraged multitudes, it is not easy 
to apprehend. Being thither brought and severally charged 
upon our knees, and having given our negative answers to every 
particular, two bishops, London and Winchester 8 , were called in 
as witnesses against us, as in that point, whether they appre- 
hended any such case of fears in the tumults assembled, as that we 
were in any danger of our lives in coming to the parliament ; 
who seemed to incline to a favourable report of the perils threat- 
ened, though one of them was convinced out of his own mouth, 
from the relations himself had made at the archbishop of York's 
lodging. After this Wild and Glyn made fearful declamations at 
the bar against us, aggravating all the circumstances of our pre- 
tended treason to the highest pitch. Our counsel were all ready 
at the bar to plead for us in answer of their clamorous and 
envious suggestions ; but it was answered, that it was now too 
late, we should have another day, which day to this day never 
came 9 . 

The circumstances of that day's hearing were more grievous to 
us than the substance ; for we were all thronged so miserably in 
that strait room before the bar, by reason that the whole house 
of commons would be there to see the prizes of their champions 
played, that we stood the whole afternoon in no small torture ; 
sweating and struggling with a merciless multitude, till being 
dismissed we were exposed to a new and greater danger. For 
now in the dark we must to the Tower, by barge as we came, 
and must shoot the bridge l with no small peril. That God, 
under whose merciful protection we are, returned us to our 
safe custody. 

There now we lay some weeks longer, expecting the summons 
for our counsel's answer ; but instead thereof our merciful adver- 
saries, well finding how sure they would be foiled in that unjust 
charge of treason, now under pretences of remitting the height of 
rigour, waive their former impeachment of treason against us, and 
fall upon an accusation of high misdemeanors in that our protes- 

8 London and Winchester.] William Juxon, and Walter Curll. 

9 Never came.'] The time began on February 19, 1641-2. See "Pro- 
ceedings against the twelve bishops upon an accusation of high treason," 
vol. iv. State Trials, p. 6382. 

1 Shoot the bridgeJ] i. e., pass under London-bridge, with the ebbing tide, 
when the fall of water was great. See Life of Wolsey, in vol. i. p. 492. 


tation, and will have us prosecuted as guilty of a premunire : 
although as we conceive the law hath ever been in the parliamen- 
tary proceedings, that if a man were impeached, as of treason 
being the highest crime, the accusant must hold him to the proof 
of the charge, and may not fall to any meaner impeachment upon 
failing of the higher. But in this case of ours it fell out other- 
wise; for although the lords had openly promised us, that 
nothing should be done against us, till we and our counsel 
were heard in our defence, yet the next news we heard was, the 
house of commons had drawn up a bill against us, wherein they 
declared us to be delinquents of a very high nature, and had 
thereupon desired to have it enacted that all our spiritual means 
should be taken away : only there should be a yearly allowance 
to every bishop for his maintenance, according to a proportion 
by them set down ; wherein they were pleased that my share 
should come to 400. per annum. This bill was sent up to 
the lords and by them also passed, and there hath ever since 

This being done, after some weeks more, finding the Tower 
besides the restraint, chargeable, we petitioned the lords that 
we might be admitted to bail ; and have liberty to return to 
our homes. The earl of Essex moved, the lords assented, took 
our bail, sent to the lieutenant of the Tower for our discharge. 
How glad were we to fly out of our cage ! No sooner was I got 
to my lodging, than I thought to take a little fresh air, in St. 
James's park ; and in my return to my lodging in the Dean's 
yard, passing through Westminster-hall, was saluted by divers 
of my parliament acquaintance, and welcomed to my liberty. 
Whereupon some that looked upon me with an evil eye ran into 
the house, and complained that the bishops were let loose ; 
which it seems was not well taken by the house of commons, 
who presently sent a kind of expostulation to the lords, that they 
had dismissed so heinous offenders without their knowledge and 
consent. Scarce had I rested me in my lodging when there 
comes a messenger to me with the sad news of sending me and 
the rest of my brethren the bishops back to the Tower again ; 
from whence we came, thither we must go ; and thither I went 
with an heavy (but I thank God not impatient) heart. After we 
had continued there some six weeks longer, and earnestly peti- 
tioned to return to our several charges, we were upon 5000. 
bond dismissed, with a clause of revocation at a short warning, 


if occasion should require. Thus having spent the time betwixt 
new-year's eve and Whitsuntide in those safe walls, where we 
by turns preached every Lord's day to a large auditory of 
citizens, we disposed of ourselves to the places of our several 

For myself, addressing myself to Norwich, whither it was his 
majesty's pleasure to remove me, I was at the first received with 
more respect, than in such times I could have expected. There 
I preached the day after my arrival to a numerous and attentive 
people ; neither was sparing of my pains in this kind ever since, 
till the times growing every day more impatient of a bishop, 
threatened my silencing. There, though with some secret mur- 
murs of disaffected persons, I enjoyed peace till the ordinance of 
sequestration came forth, which was in the latter end of March 
following. Then, when I was in hope of receiving the profits of 
the foregoing half year, for the maintenance of my family, were 
all my rents stopped and diverted, and in the April following came 
the sequestrators, viz. Mr. Sotherton, Mr. Tooly, Mr. Rawley, 
Mr. Greenewood, &c. to the palace, and told me that by virtue of 
an ordinance of parliament they must seize upon the palace, and 
all the estate I had, both real and personal ; and accordingly sent 
certain men appointed by them (whereof one had been burned in 
the hand for the mark of his truth,) to apprize all the goods 
that were in the house, which they accordingly executed with all 
diligent severity, not leaving so much as a dozen of trenchers, or 
my children's pictures out of their curious inventory. Yea they 
would have apprized our very wearing clothes, had not alderman 
Tooly and sheriff Rawley (to whom I sent to require their judg- 
ment concerning the ordinance in this point) declared their 
opinion to the contrary. 

These goods, both library and houshold stuff of all kinds, were 
appointed to be exposed to public sale. Much inquiry there was 
when the goods should be brought to the market ; but in the mean 
time Mrs. Goodwin, a religious good gentlewoman, whom yet we 
had never known or seen, being moved with compassion, very 
kindly offered to lay down to the sequestrators that whole sum 
which the goods were valued at ; and was pleased to leave thorn 
in our hands for our use, till we might be able to repurchase 
them ; which she did accordingly, and had the goods formally 
delivered to her by Mr. Smith, and Mr. Greenewood, two seques- 
trators. As for the books, several stationers looked on them, 


but were not forward to buy them ; at last Mr. Cook, a worthy 
divine of this diocese, gave bond to the sequestrators, to pay to 
them the whole sum whereat they were set, which was afterwards 
satisfied out of that poor pittance that was allowed me for my 
maintenance. As for my evidences they required them from me. 
I denied them, as not holding myself bound to deliver them. 
They nailed, and sealed up the door, and took such as they found 
with me. 

But before this, the first noise that I heard of my trouble was, 
that one morning, before my servants were up, there came to my 
gates one Wright, a London trooper, attended with others, 
requiring entrance, threatening if they were not admitted, to 
break open the gates ; whom I found at my first sight struggling 
with one of my servants for a pistol, which he had in his hand. 
I demanded his business at that unseasonable time ; he told me, 
he came to search for arms and ammunition, of which I must be 
disarmed. I told him I had only two muskets in the house, and 
no other military provision. He not resting upon my word 
searched round about the house, looked into the chests and 
trunks, examined the vessels in the cellar ; finding no other war- 
like furniture, he asked me what horses I had, for his commission 
was to take them also. I told him how poorly I was stored, and 
that my age would not allow me to travel on foot. In conclusion 
he took one horse for the present, and such account of another, 
that he did highly expostulate with me afterwards, that I had 
otherwise disposed of him. 

Now not only my rents present, but the arrearages of the 
former years, which I had in favour forborne to some tenants, 
being treacherously confessed to the sequestrators, were by them 
called for, and taken from me ; neither was there any course at 
all taken for my maintenance. I therefore addressed myself to 
the committee sitting here at Norwich, and desired them to give 
order for some means, out of that large patrimony of the church, 
to be allowed me. They all thought it very just, and there being 
present sir Thomas Woodhouse 2 , and sir John Potts 3 , parliament 
men, it was moved and held fit by them and the rest, that the 

2 Sir Thomas Woodhouse.] Of Kemberley, M.P. for Thetford. He was 
the second baronet of the name. The present lord Wodehouse is his lineal 

8 Sir John Potts.'] Of Mannington, M.P. for Norfolk. He was the first 
baronet of his family. 



proportion which the votes of the parliament had pitched upon, 
viz. 4:001. per annum, should be allowed to me. My lord of Man- 
chester, who was then conceived to have great power in matter of 
these sequestrations, was moved herewith. He apprehended it 
very just and reasonable, and wrote to the committee here to set 
out so many of the manors belonging to this bishopric as should 
amount to the said sum of 400. annually ; which was answerably 
done under the hands of the whole table. And now I well hoped, 
I should yet have a good competency of maintenance out of that 
plentiful estate which I might have had : but those hopes were 
no sooner conceived than dashed ; for before I could gather up 
one quarterns rent, there comes down an order from the commit- 
tee for sequestrations above, under the hand of serjeant Wild 4 the 
chairman, procured by Mr. Miles Corbet 5 , to inhibit any such 
allowance ; and telling our committee here, that neither they, 
nor any other had power to allow me any thing at all : but if my 
wife found herself to need a maintenance, upon her suit to the 
committee of lords and commons, it might be granted that she 
should have a fifth part according to the ordinance, allowed for 
the sustentation of herself, and her family. Hereupon she sends 
a petition up to that committee, which after a long delay was 
admitted to be read, and an order granted for the fifth part. But 
still the rents and revenues both of my spiritual and temporal 
lands were taken up by the sequestrators both in Norfolk, and 
Suffolk, and Essex, and we kept off from either allowance or 
account. At last upon much pressing, Beadle the solicitor, and 
Rust the collector, brought in an account to the committee, such 
as it was ; but so confused and perplexed, and so utterly imper- 
fect, that we could never come to know what a fifth part meant : 
but they were content that I should eat my books by setting off 
the sum engaged for them out of the fifth part. Mean time the 
synodals both in Norfolk and Suffolk, and all the spiritual profits 
of the diocese were also kept back, only ordinations and institu- 
tions continued a while. But after the covenant 6 was appointed 
to be taken, and was generally swallowed of both clergy and laity, 
my power of ordination was with some strange violence restrained. 
For when I was going on in my wonted course (which no law or 

* Serjeant Wild.'] John Wild, or Wylde, M.P. for Worcestershire. 
6 Miles Corbet.'] M.P. for Yarmouth. 

c After the covenant.'] See lord Clarendon's Hist, nf the Rebellion, b. vii. 
Fuller, Church History, book x. p. 2017. 


ordinance had inhibited) certain forward volunteers in the city, 
banding together, stir up the mayor and aldermen and sheriffs to 
call me to an account for an open violation of their Covenant. 
To this purpose divers of them came to my gates at a very unsea- 
sonable time, and knocking very vehemently, required to speak 
with the bishop ! Messages were sent to them to know their 
business. Nothing would satisfy them but the bishop's presence ; 
at last I came down to them, and demanded what the matter 
was ; they would have the gate opened, and then they would tell 
me ; I answered that I would know them better first : if they 
had any thing to say to me I was ready to hear them. They 
told me they had a writing to me from Mr. Mayor, and some 
other of their magistrates. The paper contained both a challenge 
of me for breaking the Covenant, in ordaining ministers ; and 
withal required me to give in the names of those which were 
ordained by me both then and formerly since the Covenant. My 
answer was that Mr. Mayor was much abused by those who had 
misinformed him, and drawn that paper from him ; that I would 
the next day give a full answer to the writing. They moved that 
my answer might be by my personal appearance at the Guildhall. 
I asked them when they ever heard of a bishop of Norwich ap- 
pearing before a mayor. I knew mine own place, and would take 
that way of answer which I thought fit ; and so dismissed them, 
who had given out that day, that had they known before of mine 
ordaining, they would have pulled me and those whom I ordained 
out of the chapel by the ears. 

Whiles I received nothing, yet something was required of me. 
They were not ashamed after they had taken away, and sold all 
my goods and personal estate, to come to me for assessments, 
and monthly payments for that estate which they had taken, and 
took distresses from me upon my most just denial, and vehe- 
mently required me to find the wonted arms of my predecessors, 
when they had left me nothing. Many insolences and affronts 
were in all this time put upon us. One while a whole rabble of 
volunteers come to my gates late, when they were locked up, and 
called for the porter to give them entrance, which being not 
yielded, they threatened to make by force, and had not the said 
gates been very strong they had done it. Others of them 
clambered over the walls, and would come into mine house ; 
their errand (they said) was to search for delinquents. What 
they would have done I know not, had not we by a secret way 

Y 2 


sent to raise the officers for our rescue. Another while the sheriff 
Toftes, and alderman Linsey, attended with many zealous fol- 
lowers, came into my chapel to look for superstitious pictures, 
and relics of idolatry, and sent for me, to let me know they found 
those windows full of images, which were very offensive, and must 
be demolished ! I told them they were the pictures of some 
antient and worthy bishops, as St. Ambrose, Austin, &c. It 
was answered me, that they were so many popes; and one 
younger man amongst the rest (Townsend as I perceived after- 
wards) would take upon him to defend that every diocesan bishop 
was pope. I answered him with some scorn, and obtained leave 
that I might with the least loss and defacing of the windows, give 
order for taking off that offence, which I did by causing the 
heads of those pictures to be taken off, since I knew the bodies 
could not offend. 

There was not that care and moderation used in reforming 
the cathedral church bordering upon my palace. It is no other 
than tragical to relate the carriage of that furious sacrilege, 
whereof our eyes and ears were the sad witnesses, under the 
authority and presence of Linsey, Toftes the sheriff, and Greene- 
wood. Lord, what work was here, what clattering of glasses, 
what beating down of walls, what tearing up of monuments, what 
pulling down of seats, what wresting out of irons and brass from 
the windows and graves ! what defacing of arms, what demo- 
lishing of curious stone- work, that had not any representation in 
the world, but only of the cost of the founder, and skill of the 
mason ; what tooting and piping upon the destroyed organ pipes, 
and what a hideous triumph on the market day before all the 
country, when in a kind of sacrilegious and profane procession, 
all the organ pipes, vestments, both copes and surplices, together 
with the leaden cross 7 , which had been newly sawn down from 

7 Leaden cross.'] In the church-warden's accounts of the parish of Lam- 
beth, fol. 288, A.D. 1642, is the following entry : 

" Paid for taking downe the crosse off the steeple ...016" 
And in fol. 293, is a further payment of 2*. In a subsequent year we find 
how the cross was disposed of; fol. 296, A.D. 1644 : 

" Rec. for the crosse that was upon the steeple, and other 

ouldeiron 136" 

The following extracts are also given from the same book, as further illus- 
trative of the proceedings of those times : fol. 293, A.D. 1643 : 
" Paide to John Pickerskill for taking downe the railes that 

were about the communion table 010" 



over the green-yard pulpit, and the service books and singing 
books that could be had, were carried to the fire in the public 
market place : a lewd wretch walking before the train, in his 
cope trailing in the dirt, with a service book in his hand, imitating 
in an impious scorn the tune, and usurping the words of the 
litany used formerly in the church ! Near the public cross, all 
these monuments of idolatry must be sacrificed to the fire, not 
without much ostentation of a zealous joy in discharging ordnance 
to the cost of some who professed how much they had longed to 
see that day. Neither was it any news upon this guild-day to have 
the cathedral now open on all sides to be filled with musketeers, 
waiting for the mayor's return, drinking and tobacconing as freely 
as if it had turned alehouse. 

Still yet I remained in my palace though with but a poor 
retinue and means ; but the house was held too good for me : 
many messages were sent by Mr. Corbet to remove me thence. 
The first pretence was, that the committee, who now was at 
charge for an house to sit in, might make their daily session there, 
being a place both more public, roomy, and chargeless. The 
committee after many consultations resolved it convenient to 
remove thither, though many overtures and offers were made to 
the contrary. Mr. Corbet was impatient of my stay there, and 
procures and sends peremptory messages for my present dis- 
lodging. We desired to have some time allowed for providing 
some other mansion, if we must needs be cast out of this, which 
my wife was so willing to hold, that she offered, (if the charge of 
the present committee house were the things stood upon) she 
would be content to defray the sum of the rent of that house 
of her fifth part ; but that might not be yielded : out we must, 
and that in three weeks warning, by midsummer-day then 
approaching, so as we might have lain in the street for ought I 
know, had not the providence of God so ordered it that a 
neighbour in the close, one Mr. Gostlin, a widower, was content 
to void his house for us. 

Fol. 296, A.D. 1644: 

"Paid to the carpenters for worke in taking downe the 

skreenes betweene the church and the chancel .... 13 
" Paid to Ed. Marshall for two dayes worke in levelling the 

chancell 040 

Fol. 300, A.D. 1645: 
" Paid for a basen to baptize in, and for the frame ... 5 


This hath been my measure ; wherefore, I know not ; Lord, thou 
knowest, who only canst remedy, and end, and forgive or avenge 
this horribU oppression. 


Scripsi, May 29, 1647. 

SHORTLY after 8 , this excellent bishop retired to a little estate, 
which he rented at Higham near Norwich ; where, notwith- 
standing the narrowness of his circumstances, he distributed a 
weekly charity to a certain number of poor widows. In this 
retirement he ended his life, September 8, 1656, aged 82 years; 
and was buried in the church-yard of that parish, without any 
memorial ; observing in his will, " I do not hold God's house a 
meet repository for the dead bodies of the greatest saints." 

He is universally allowed to have been a man of incomparable 
piety, meekness, and modesty, having a thorough knowledge of 
the world, and of great wit and learning. 

A writer" observes of him that " he may be said to have died 
with the pen in his hand. He was commonly called our English 
Seneca, for his pure, plain and full stile. Not ill at contro- 
versies, more happy at comments, very good in his characters, 
better in his sermons, best of all in his meditations" 

8 Shortly after.~\ This conclusion is transcribed from the notes to an 
edition of this life, &c. prefixed to an edition of bishop Hall's Contemplations, 
published AD. 1759, by the Rev. Wra. Dodd. 

c England's Worthies, p. 441. 


In these things we also have been but too like the sons of Israel ; for when 
we sinned as greatly, we also have groaned under as great and sad a calamity. 
For we have not only felt the evils of an intestine war, but God hath smitten 
us in our spirit, and laid the scene of his judgments especially in religion. 
But I delight not to observe the correspondencies of such sad accidents : 
they do but help to vex the offending part, and relieve the afflicted but with 
a fantastic and groundless comfort. I will therefore deny leave to my own 
affections to ease themselves by complaining of others. I shall only crave 
leave, that I may remember Jerusalem, and call to mind the pleasures of the 
temple, the order of her services, the beauty of her buildings, the sweetness 
of her songs, the decency of her ministrations, the assiduity and oeconomy of 
her priests and levites, the daily sacrifice, and that eternal fire of devotion, 
that went not out by day nor by night. These were the pleasures of our 
peace : and there is a remanent felicity in the very memory of those spiritual 
delights, which we then enjoyed as antepasts of heaven, and consignations to 
an immortality of joys. And it may be so again, when it shall please God, who 
hath the hearts of all princes in his hand, and turneth them as the rivers of 
waters ; and when men will consider the invaluable loss that is consequent, 
and the danger of sin that is append ant to the destroying of such forms of 
discipline and devotion, in which God was purely worshipped, and the church 
was edified, and the people instructed to great degrees of piety, knowledge, 
and devotion. 



THE following account of Dr. Henry Hammond is a republication 
of The Life of the most learned, reverend and pious Dr. II. Ham- 
mond, written by John Fell, D.D. Dean of Christ Church in 
Oxford; the second edition; London, 1662; of which the first 
edition came out in the year preceding. 


DOCTOR HENRY HAMMOND, whose life is now attempted to be 
written, was born upon the eighteenth of August in the year 
1 605, at Chertsey in Surrey, a place formerly of remark for Julius 
Caesar's supposed passing his army there over the Thames, in his 
enterprise upon this island; as also for the entertainment of 
devotion in its earliest reception by our Saxon ancestors ; and of 
later years, for the charity of having given burial to the equally 
pious and unfortunate prince king Henry VI. 

He was the youngest son of Dr. John Hammond physician to 
prince Henry ; and from that great favourer of meriting servants 
and their relations, had the honour at the font to receive his 
Christian name. 

Nor had he an hereditary interest in learning only from his 
father ; by his mother's side he was allied both unto it and the 
profession of theology, being descended 1 from Dr. Alexander 
Nowel, the reverend dean of St. Paul's, that great and happy 
instrument of the reformation, and eminent light of the English 

Being yet in his long coats, (which heretofore were usually 
worn beyond the years of infancy 2 ,) he was sent to Eton school ; 
where his pregnancy, having been advantaged by the more than 

1 Being descended.] But see Churton's Life of Nowell, pp. 362, 3. 

2 The years of infancy. ~] " When about seven years old" (it is related of 
Williams, afterward archbishop of York, the antagonist and rival of arch- 
bishop Laud, that) " He took a leap, being then in long coats, from the walls 
of Conway town to the sea shore, looking that the wind, which was then very 
strong, would fill his coats like a sail, and bear him up, as it did with his 

play fellows : but he found it otherwise ." Hacket's Life of Williams, 

p. 8. This was about the year 1590. 


paternal care and industry of his father (who was an exact critic 
in the learned languages, especially the Greek), became the ob- 
servation of those that knew him : for in that tenderness of age 
he was not only a proficient in Greek and Latin, but had also 
some knowledge in the elements of Hebrew: in the latter of 
which tongues, it being then rarely heard of even out of grammar 
schools, he grew the tutor of those who began to write themselves 
men, but thought it no shame to learn of one whose knowledge 
seemed rather infused than acquired ; or in whom the learned 
languages might be thought to be the mother tongue. His skill 
in the Greek was particularly advantaged by the conversation and 
kindness of Mr. Allen, one of the fellows of the college, excel- 
lently seen in that language, and a great assistance of sir Henry 
Savile in his magnificent edition of St. Chrysostom. 

His sweetness of carriage is very particularly remembered by 
his contemporaries, who observed that he was never engaged 
(upon any occasion) into fights or quarrels ; as also that at times 
allowed for play, he would steal from his fellows* into places 

3 Steal from his fellows] The place, and the engagements of this school- 
boy remind us of the narrative given by the pious and amiable Dr. Henry 
More of his own early years. " Being bred up, to the almost fourteenth 
year of my age, under parents, and a master, that were great Calvinists, but 
withal, very pious and good ones ; at that time, by the order of my parents, 
persuaded to it by my uncle, I immediately went to Eton school ; not to 
learn any new precepts or institutes of religion, but for the perfecting of the 
Greek and Latin tongue. But neither there, not yet any where else, could I 
ever swallow down that hard doctrine concerning Fate. On the contrary, I 
remember that upon those words of Epictetus, "Aye /x? w Zfi), cat <rr >'/ 
7r7rpa>/^7, Lead me, O Jupiter, and thou Fate, I did, with my eldest brother, 
who then, as it happened, had accompanied my uncle thither, very stoutly 
and earnestly for my years, dispute against this fate or Calvinistical predesti- 
nation, as it is usually called : and that my uncle, when he came to know it, 
chid me severely ; adding menaces withal of correction, and a rod for my 
immature forwardness in philosophizing concerning such matters. Moreover, 
that I had such a deep aversion in my temper to this opinion, and so firm and 
unshaken a persuasion of the divine justice and goodness ; that, on a certain 
day, in a ground belonging to Eton College, where the boys used to play and 
exercise themselves, musing concerning these things with myself, and recalling 
to my mind the doctrine of Calvin, I did thus seriously and deliberately con- 
clude within myself, namely, If I am one of those that are predestinated unto 
hell, where all things are full of nothing but cursing and blasphemy, yet will I 
behave myself there patiently and submissively towards God : and if there be 
any one thing more than another, that is acceptable to him, that will I set myself 
to do, with a sincere heart, and to the utmost of my power. . . . which medita- 


of privacy, there to say his prayers : omens of his future pacific 
temper and eminent devotion. 

Which softness of temper his schoolmaster Mr. Bush, who 
upon his father's account had a tender kindness for him, looked 
upon with some jealousy ; for he building upon the general obser- 
vation, that gravity and passiveness in children is not from dis- 
cretion but phlegm, suspected that his scholar's faculties would 
desert his industry, and end only in a laborious well-read non- 
proficiency : but the event gave full and speedy defeat to those 
well-meant misgivings ; for he so improved, that at thirteen years 
old he was thought, and (what is much more rare) was indeed 
ripe for the university, and accordingly sent to Magdalen college 
in Oxford, where not long after he was chosen demy; and though 
he stood low upon the roll, by a very unusual concurrence of pro- 
vidential events, happened to be sped : and though, having then 
lost his father, he became destitute of the advantage which potent 
recommendation might have given, yet his merit voting for him, 
as soon as capable he was chosen fellow. 

Being to proceed master of arts, he was made reader of the 
natural philosophy lecture in the college, and also was employed 
in making the funeral oration on the highly meriting president 
Dr. Langton. 

tion of mine is as firmly fixed in my memory, and the very place where I 
stood, as if the thing had been transacted but a day or two ago. 

" And as to what concerns the existence of God, though in that ground 
mentioned, walking, as my manner was, slowly, and with my head on one side, 
and kicking now and then the stones with my feet, I was wont sometimes, 
with a sort of musical and melancholick manner, to repeat, or rather humm 
to myself those verses of Claudian : 

* Ssepe mihi dubiam traxit sententia mentem, 
Curarent Superi terras ; an nullus inesset 
Rector, et incerto fluerent mortalia casu :' 

' Oft hath my anxious mind divided stood, 

Whether the gods did mind this lower world ; 
Or whether no such Ruler, wise and good, 
We had ; and all things here by chance were hurled ;' 

yet that exceeding hale and intire sense of God, which nature herself had 
planted deeply in me, very easily silenced all such slight and poetical dubita- 
tions as these. Yea, even in my just childhood, an inward sense of the 
divine presence was so strong upon my mind, that I did then believe, there 
could no deed, word or thought be hidden from him." Life of the learned 
and pious Dr. Henry More, by Richard Ward, A.M. London, 1710. 8vo, p. 5. 


Having taken his degree, he presently bought a system of 
divinity, with a design to apply himself straightway to that 
study : but upon second thoughts he returned for a time to 
human learning, and afterwards when he resumed his purpose 
for theology, took a quite different course of reading from the 
other too much usual *, beginning that science at the upper end, 
as conceiving it most reasonable to search for primitive truth in 
the primitive writers, and not to suffer his understanding to be 
prepossest by the contrived and interested schemes of modern 
and withal obnoxious authors. 

Anno 1 629, being twenty-four years of age, the statutes of his 
house directing, and the canons of the church then regularly per- 
mitting it, he entered into holy orders : and upon the same 
grounds not long after took the degree of bachelor in divinity, 
giving as happy proof of his proficiency in sacred, as before he 
had done in secular knowledge. 

During the whole time of his abode in the university he gene- 
rally spent thirteen hours of the day in study ; by which assiduity 
besides an exact dispatch of the whole course of philosophy, ho 

4 Too much usual.'] " To such an absolute authority were the names and 
writings of some men advanced by their diligent followers, that not to yield 
obedience to their ipse dixits, was a crime unpardonable. 

" It is true king James observed the inconvenience, and prescribed a 
remedy, sending Instructions to the Universities, bearing date Jan. 18, anno 
1616, wherein it was directed amongst other things, that young students in 
divinity should be excited to study such books as were most agreeable in doctrine 
and discipline to the Church of England ; and to bestow their time in the 
Fathers and Councils, Schoolmen, Histories, and Controversies; and not to 
insist too long upon Compendiums and Abbreviators, making them the grounds 
of their study. And I conceive that from that time forwards the names and 
reputations of some leading men of the Foreign Churches, which till then 
carried all before them, did begin to lessen; divines growing daily more 
willing to free themselves from that servitude and vassalage, to which the 
authority of those names had enslaved their judgments. About those times 
it was, that I began my studies in divinity; and thought no course so 
proper and expedient for me, as the way commended by king James .... 
For though I had a good respect both to the memory of Luther, and the name 
of Calvin ; as those whose writings had awakened all these parts of Europe 
out of the ignorance and superstition under which they suffered ; yet I 
always took them to be men : men as obnoxious unto error, as subject unto 
human frailty, and as indulgent too to their own opinions, as any others 
whatsoever." Heylin's Sum of Christian Theology, in the address to the 
reader. 1673. folio. Compare also above, Life of Bishop Hall, p. 297, 


read over in a manner all classic authors that are extant ; and 
upon the more considerable wrote, as he passed, scholia and 
critical emendations, and drew up indexes for his private use at 
the beginning and end of each book : all which remain at this 
time, and testify his indefatigable pains to as many as have 
perused his library. 

In the year 1633, the reverend Dr. Frewen 5 , the then president 
of his college, now lord arch-bishop of York, gave him the honour 
to supply one of his courses at the court ; where the right 
honourable the earl of Leicester 6 happened to be an auditor. He 
was so deeply affected with the sermon, and took so just a mea- 
sure of the merit of the preacher thence, that the rectory of 
Penshurst 7 being at that time void, and in his gift, he imme- 
diately offered him the presentation : which being accepted, he 
was inducted on the 22 of A ugust in the same year ; and thence- 
forth from the scholastic retirements of an university life, applied 
himself to the more busy entertainments of a rural privacy, and 
what some have called the being buried in a living : and being to 
leave the house, he thought not fit to take that advantage of his 
place, which from sacrilege, or selling of the founder's charity, 
was by custom grown to be prudence and good husbandry. 

In the discharge of his ministerial function, he satisfied not 
himself in diligent and constant preaching only ; (a performance 
wherein some of late have fancied all religion to consist) but 
much more conceived himself obliged to the offering up the 
solemn daily sacrifice of prayer for his people, administering 
the sacraments, relieving the poor, keeping hospitality, recon- 
ciling of differences amongst neighbours, visiting the sick, cate- 
chizing the youth. 

As to the first of these, his preaching \ it was not at the ordi- 
nary rate of the times 8 , an unpremeditated, undigested effusion 

5 Frewen.~\ Accepted Frewen, dean of Gloucester, bishop of Lichfield and 
Coventry, August 17, 1643 ; archbishop of York, September 22, 1660 ; died, 
March 28, 1664. 

Leicester.'] Robert Sydney, second earl of Leicester. 

: Penshurst.'] In Kent : the well-known seat of the Sydneys. 

8 Rate of the times.'] Of Hammond's friend the learned Dr. Edward 
Pocock, the ornament and pride of his country, especially as an orien- 
talist, we are told by his biographer, that as he avoided in his preaching 
" The shews and ostentations of learning ; so he would not, by any means, 
indulge himself in the practice of those arts, which at that time were very 
common, and much admired by ordinary people. Such were distortions of 


of shallow and crude conceptions; but a rational and just dis- 
course, that was to teach the priest as well as the lay-hearer. 
His method was (which likewise he recommended to his friends) 
after every sermon to resolve upon the ensuing subject ; that 
being done, to pursue the course of study which he was then in 
hand with, reserving the close of the week for the provision for 
the next LordVday. Whereby not only a constant progress was 
made in science, but materials unawares were gained unto the 
immediate future work : for, he said, be the subjects treated of 
never so distant, somewhat will infallibly fall in conducible unto 
the present purpose. 

The offices of prayer he had in his church, not only upon the 
Sundays and festivals and their eves, as also Wednesdays and 
Fridays, according to the appointment of the rubric : (which 
strict duty and administration when it is examined to the bottom 
will prove the greatest objection against the liturgy; as that 
which, besides its own trouble and austerity, leaves no leisure for 
factious and licentious meetings at fairs and markets) but every 
day 9 in the week, and twice on Saturdays, and holy-day eves : 
for his assistance wherein he kept a curate, and allowed him a 
comfortable salary. And at those devotions he took order that 
his family should give diligent and exemplary attendance : which 
was the easilier performed, it being guided by his mother a 
woman of ancient virtue, and one to whom he paid a more than 
filial obedience. 

As to the administration of the Sacrament, he reduced it to an 
imitation, though a distant one, of primitive frequency, to once a 
month, and therewith its anciently inseparable appendant, the 
offertory : wherein his instruction and happily-insinuating exain- 

the countenance and strange gestures, a violent and unnatural way of speak- 
ing, and affected words and phrases, which being out of the ordinary way, 
were therefore supposed to express somewhat very mysterious, and in a high 
degree spiritual . . . 

" His care not to amuse his hearers, with things which they could not 
understand, gave some of them occasion to entertain very contemptible 
thoughts of his learning, and to speak of him accordingly. So that one of 
his Oxford friends, as he travelled through Childry, enquiring, for his diver- 
sion, of some people, who was their minister, and how they liked him, 
received from them this answer, Our parson is one Mr. Pocock, a plain, 
honest man ; but Master, said they, he is no Latiner." Trail's Life of Dr. 
Edward Pocock, prefixed to Pocock's Theological Works, p. 22. 

9 But every dayJ] Compare above, Life of Herbert, vol. iv. p. 38. 


pie so far prevailed, that there was thenceforth little need of ever 
making any tax for the poor. Nay, (if the report of a sober 
person, born and bred up in that parish, be to be believed) in 
short time a stock was raised to be always ready for the appren- 
ticing of young children, whose parents'* condition made the pro- 
vision for them an equal charity to both the child and parent. 
And after this there yet remained a surplusage for the assistance 
of the neighbour parishes. 

For the relief of the poor, besides the forementioned expedient, 
wherein others were sharers with him, unto his private charity, 
the dedicating the tenth of all receipts, and the alms daily given 
at the door, he constantly set apart over and above every week a 
certain rate in money : and however rarely his own rent-days 
occurred, the indigent had two and fifty quarter-days returning 
in his year. Yet farther, another act of charity he had, the 
selling corn to his poor neighbours at a rate below the market- 
price : which though, as he said, he had reason to do, gaining 
thereby the charge of portage, was a great benefit to them, who 
besides the abatement of price, and possibly forbearance, saved 
thereby a day's work. 

He that was thus liberal to the necessitous poor, was no less 
hospitable to those of better quality : and as at other times he 
frequently invited his neighbours to his table, so more especially 
on Sundays ; which seldom past at any time without bringing 
some of them his guests : but here beyond the weekly treatments, 
the Christmas festival had a peculiar allowance to support it. 
He knew well how much the application at the table inforced the 
doctrines of the pulpit, and how subservient the endearing of his 
person was to the recommending his instructions ; how far upon 
these motives our Saviour thought fit to eat with publicans and 
sinners ; and how effectual the loaves were to the procuring of 

In accordance to which his generous freedom in alms and 
hospitality, he farther obliged his parishioners in the setting of 
their tithes and dues belonging to him ; for though he very well 
understood how prone men are to give complaints in payment, 
and how little obligation there is on him that lets a bargain to 
consider the casual loss, who is sure never to share in a like sur- 
plusage of gain ; yet herein he frequently departed from his right 
insomuch that having set the tithe of a large meadow, and upon 
agreement received part of the money at the beginning of the 

VOL. iv. z 


year ; it happening that the profits were afterwards spoiled and 
carried away by a flood, he, when the tenant came to make his 
last payment, not only refused it, but returned the former sum, 
saying to the poor man, " God forbid I should take the tenth 
where you have not the nine parts.' 1 

As by public admonition he most diligently instilled that great 
and fundamental doctrine of peace and love, so did he likewise in 
his private address and conversation, being never at peace in him- 
self, till he had procured it amongst his neighbours; wherein 
God so blest him, that he not only attained his purpose of uniting 
distant parties unto each other, but, contrary to the usual fate of 
reconcilers, gained them to himself: there having been no person 
of his function any where better beloved than he when present, or 
lamented more when absent, by his flock. Of which tender and 
very filial affection, instead of more we may take two instances : 
the one, that he being driven away, and his books plundered, one 
of his neighbours bought them * in his behalf, and preserved them 
for him till the end of the war ; the other, that during his abode 
at Penshurst he never had any vexatious law dispute about his 
dues, but had his tithes fully paid, and not of the most refuse 
parts, but generally the very best. 

Though he judged the time of sickness an improper season for 
the great work of repentance ; yet he esteemed it a most useful 
preparative, the voice of God himself exhorting to it : and there- 
fore not only when desired made his visits to all such as stood in 
need of those his charities, but prevented their requests by early 
and frequent coming to them. And this he was so careful of, 
that after his remove from Penshurst, being at Oxford, and 
hearing of the sickness of one of his parishioners, he from thence 
sent to him those instructions which he judged useful in that 
exigent, and which he could not give at nearer distance. 

For the institution of youth in the rudiments of piety, his 
custom was during the warmer season of the year, to spend an 
hour before evening-prayer in catechising, whereat the parents 
and older sort were wont to be present, and from whence (as he 
with comfort was used to say) they reaped more benefit than 
from his sermons. Where it may not be superfluous to observe 
that he introduced no new form of catechism *, but adhered to 

1 Bought them.'] Compare Life of Bishop Hall, above, p. 320. 

2 No new form of catechism.'] The later years of queen Elizabeth, and tbe 
reign of king James, and, though in a less degree, that of king Charles, pro- 


that of the church ; rendering it fully intelligible to the meanest 
capacities by his explanations. It may be useful withal to advert, 

duced a vast multitude of catechisms, written by independent and unautho- 
rized individuals, which, for the most part, were composed upon very narrow, 
and Calvinistical principles. In reference to some of these Dr. Thomas 
Jackson says, " In the mean time, I shall every day bless my Lord God, as 
for all others, so in particular for the great blessing bestowed upon me, that 
I was in a convenient age, in a happy time and place, presented by my sure- 
ties in baptism, to ratify the vow which they made for me, and to receive the 
benediction of the bishop of the diocese : being first instructed in the Church's 
Catechism, by the curate of the parish, from whose lips (though but a mere 
grammar scholar, and one that knew better how to read an Homily, or to 
understand Hemingius, or the Latin Postills, than to make a sermon, in 
English) I learned more good lessons, than I did from many popular ser- 
mons : and to this day remember more, than men of this time of greater 
years shall find in many late applauded Catechisms." And a little afterwards : 
"Albeit the reverend fathers of our church, and their suffragans, should use 
all possible care and diligence for performing of all that is on their parts 
required, yet without some better conformity of Catechisms, and reformation 
of such as write them, or preach doctrines conformable to them, there is small 
hope, that in such plenty of preachers, as now there are, this work of the 
Lord should prosper half so well, as it did in those times and in those 
dioceses, wherein there were scarce ten able preachers, besides the preben- 
daries of the cathedral church, under whose tuition in a manner the rest of 
the clergy were .... The writers then in most esteem were Melancthon, 
Bullinger, Hemingius (especially in Postills, and other opuscula of his,) or 
other writers, who were most conformable to the book of Homilies, which 
were weekly read upon severe penalty." Jackson's Works, vol. iii. p. 273. 
In like manner Wren, bishop of Ely, in his Answer to the Articles of Impeach- 
ment, exhibited against him [see p. 307, ante] in the year 1641, by the house 
of commons, for some alleged crimes and misdemeanours, saith, " That he did 
direct that the said catechizing should be according to the catechism of the 
church of England only, which catechism is by the law of the land in the 
rubrics of the service-book proposed as the rule of examination for the bishop 
to go by, and is the best form that ever was compiled for laying the founda- 
tion and grounds of religion in the hearts and minds of unlearned Christians. 
He considered also, that the great variety of catechisms which every man did in 
former time thrust out at his pleasure, did distract and corrupt the minds of 
the people, more than any thing else, sowing in them the seeds both of error 
and faction. And he conceived it an unreasonable thing, that in the church 
any catechizing should be publicly practised, but according to the catechism 
which the church of England in her liturgy alloweth. The due observation 
whereof was so far from suppressing knowledge, or introducing ignorance, that 
the defendant is humbly confident it produced the quite contrary effects. For 
some godly and laborious ministers (by name, as he remembereth, one Mr. 
Crackenthoym [Crackenthorpe ?], then parson of Burton Magna in Suffolk, and 
another of his diocese neighbour, with him, men otherwise unknown to this 

z 2 


that if in those times catechetical institution were very season- 
able it will now be much more ; when principles have been ex- 
changed for dreams of words and notions 2 ; if not for a worse 
season of profane contempt of Christian truth. But to return ; 
besides all this, that there might be no imaginable assistance 
wanting, he took care for the providing an able schoolmaster in 
the parish, which he continued during the whole time of his 

And as he thus laboured in the spiritual building up of souls, 
he was not negligent of the material fabric committed to his 
trust : but repaired with a very great expence (the annual charge 
of 100.) his parsonage-house ; till from an incommodious ruin he 
had rendered it a fair and pleasant dwelling, with the adherent 
conveniences of gardens and orchards. 

While he was thus busy on his charge, though he so prodigally 
laid out himself upon the interests of his flock, as he might seem 
to have nothing left for other purposes ; and his humility recom- 
mended above all things privacy and retirement to him : yet 
when the uses of the public called him forth, he readily obeyed 
the summons, and frequently preached both at St. Paul's Cross, 
and the visitations of his brethren the clergy, (a specimen whereof 
appears in print,) as also at the cathedral church of Chichester, 
where by the unsought-for favour of the reverend father in God, 
Brian 4 , then lord bishop of that see, since of Winchester, he had 
an interest, and had the dignity of arch-deacon : which at the 
beginning of the late troubles falling to him \ he managed with 
great zeal and prudence ; not only by all the charms of Christian 

defendant) came to visit him, and told him, that they blessed God for the good, 
which upon half a year's experience they had found therein, professing that their 
people had sensibly profited more by this catechizing within that short space, 
for the true apprehending and understanding the grounds of religion, than 
they had done by their great and constant labours in preaching to them for 
some years before." Wren's Parent alia, p. 85. 

8 Words and notions."] " 17 Sept. (1655.) On Sunday afternoon, I fre- 
quently stay'd at home to catechise and instruct my familie, those exercises 
universally ceasing in the parish churches, so as people had no principles, 
and grew very ignorant of even the common points of Christianity, all devo- 
tion being now placed in hearing sermons and discourses of speculative and 
notional things." Evelyn's Memoirs, vol. i. p. 287. 1818. 

4 Brian.']. Brian Duppa, dean of Christ Church; bishop of Chichester, 
June 12, 1638; bishop of Salisbury, 1641 ; bishop of Winchester, Sept. 10, 
1660; died March 26, 1662. 

6 Falling to him.] In the year 1643. Le Neve's Fasti, p. 66. 


rhetoric persuading to obedience and union, but by the force of 
demonstration charging it as most indispensable duty, and (what 
was then not so readily believed) the greatest temporal interest 
of the inferior clergy : wherein the eminent importance of the 
truths he would inforce so far prevailed over his otherwise insu- 
perable modesty, that in a full assembly of the clergy, as he 
afterwards confessed, he broke off from what he had preme- 
ditated, and out of the abundance of his heart spoke to his 
auditory ; and by the blessing of God, to which he attributed it, 
found a very signal reception. 

In the year 1 639 he proceeded doctor in divinity ; his seniority 
in the university and employment in the church and (what per- 
chance was a more importunate motive) the desire of eleven of 
his friends and contemporaries in the same house, whom not to 
accompany might be interpreted an affected pride and singularity, 
at least an unkindness, jointly persuading him to it. 

His performance in the act, where he answered the doctors, 
was to the equal satisfaction and wonder of his hearers; a 
country-life usually contracting at the least an unreadiness to 
the dexterous management of those exercises, which was an 
effect undiscernible in him. 

About this time he became a member of the convocation called 
with the short parliament in 1 640 ; as after this he was named 
to be of the assembly of divines ; his invincible loyalty to his 
prince and obedience to his mother the church not being so valid 
arguments against his nomination, as the repute of his learning 
and virtue were on the other part, to have some title to him. 

And now that conformity became a crime, and tumults 
improving into hostility and war, such a crime as had chastise- 
ments severe enough; though the committee of the country 
summoned him before them, and used those their best arguments 
of persuasion, threatenings and reproaches, he still went on in 
his regular practice, and continued it till the middle of July 1 643. 
At which time there being in his neighbourhood about Tunbridge 
an attempt in behalf of the king, and his doctrine and example 
having had that good influence, as it was supposed, to have made 
many more ready to the discharge of their duty ; it being defeated, 
the good doctor (the malice of one who designed to succeed in 
his living being withal assistant) was forced to secure himself by 
retirement ; which he did, withdrawing himself to his old tutor 
Dr. Buckner ; to whom he came about the 25th of July, early in 


the morning, in such an habit as that exigence made necessary 
for him ; and whither not many days before his old friend and 
fellow-pupil Dr. Oliver came upon the same errand. Which 
accident, and the necessity to leave his flock, as the doctor after- 
wards frequently acknowledged, was that which did most affect 
him of any that he felt in his whole life : amidst which, though 
he was no valuer of trifles, or any thing that looked like such, 
he had so extraordinary a dream, that he could not then despise, 
nor ever afterwards forget it. 

It was thus. He thought himself and a multitude of others to 
have been abroad in a bright and cheerful day, when on a sudden 
there seemed a separation to be made, and he with the far less 
number to be placed at a distance from the rest ; and then the 
clouds gathering, a most tempestuous storm arose, with thun- 
dering and lightnings, with spouts of impetuous rain, and violent 
gusts of wind, and whatever else might add unto a scene of 
horror ; particularly balls of fire that shot themselves among the 
ranks of those that stood in the lesser party ; when a gentle whisper 
seemed to interrupt those other louder noises, saying, " Be still, 
and ye shall receive no harm." Amidst these terrors the doctor 
falling to his prayers, soon after the tempest ceased, and that 
known cathedral anthem began, Come, Lord Jesus, come away ; 
with which he awoke. The correspondent event of all which he 
found verified signally in the preservation both of himself and his 
friends, in doing of their duties ; the which with much content he 
was used to mention. Beside, being himself taken to the quires of 
angels at the close of that land hurricane of ours, whereof that 
dismal apparition was only a faint emblem, he gave thereby too 
literal a completion to his dream, and the unhappy credit of 
bordering upon prophecy. 

In this retirement the two doctors remained about three 
weeks, till an alarm was brought that a strict enquiry was made 
for doctor Hammond, and 100?. promised as a reward for him 
that should produce him. Which suggestion though they easily 
apprehended to have a possibility of being false, yet they con- 
cluded a necessary ground for their remove. 

Upon this they resolve to be gone ; and Dr. Oliver having an 
interest in Winchester, which was then in the king^s quarters, 
they chose that as the next place of their retreat. But being on 
the way thither, Dr. Oliver, who had sent his servant befor. 
make provision for them, was met and saluted with the news that 


doctor Frewen, president of Magdalen college, was made bishop 
of Litchfield, and that the college had pitched upon him as suc- 
cessor. This unlooked-for accident -(as justly it might) put 
doctor Oliver to new counsels ; and since Providence had found 
out so seasonable a relief, inclined him not to desert it, but fly 
rather to his preferments and advantage, than merely to his 
refuge, and so to divert to Oxford. To this Dr. Hammond made 
much difficulty to assent, thinking that too public a place, and, 
what he more considered, too far from his living, whither (his 
desires strongly inclining him) he had hopes (when the present 
fury was allayed) to return again ; and to that purpose had 
written to such friends of his as were in power, to use their in- 
terest for the procuring his security. But his letters meeting a 
cold reception, and the company of his friend on one hand, and 
the appearance of deserting him on the other hand, charming 
him to it, he was at last persuaded ; and encompassing Hamp- 
shire, with some difficulty came to Oxford ; where procuring an . 
apartment in his old college, he sought that peace in his retire- 
ment and study which was no where else to be met withal ; 
taking no other diversion than what the giving encouragement 
and instruction to ingenious young students yielded him, (a thing 
wherein he peculiarly delighted) and the satisfaction which he 
received from the conversation of learned men, who, besides the 
usual store, in great number at that time for their security 
resorted thither. 

Among the many eminent persons with whom he here con- 
versed, he had particular intimacy with Dr. Potter, provost of 
Queen's college, to whom, among other fruits of his studies, he 
communicated his Practical Catechism, which for his private use 
he had drawn up. The provost, much taken with the design, 
and no less with the performance, importuned him to make it 
public ; alleging, in that lawless age the great use of supplanting 
the empty form of godliness which so prevailed, by substituting 
of its real power and sober duties ; of silencing prophaneness, 
which then usurped the names of wit and gallantry, by enforcing 
the more eligible acts of the Christian's reasonable service ; 
which was not any other way so happily to be done as by begin- 
ning at the foundation by sound, and yet not trivial, catechetic 

It was not hard to convince Dr. Hammond that it were well 
if some such thing were done ; but that his writing would do this 


in any measure, or that he should suffer his name to become 
public, it was impossible to persuade him. The utmost he could 
be brought to allow of was, that his treatise was not likely to do 
harm, but had possibilities of doing (it might be) some good, and 
that it would not become him to deny that service to the world ; 
especially if his modesty might be secured from pressure by the 
concealing of him to be the author. And this doctor Potter, 
that he might leave no subterfuge, undertook, and withal the 
whole care of, and besides the whole charge of the edition. Upon 
these terms, only with this difference, that doctor Hammond 
would not suffer the provost to be at the entire charge, but went 
an equal share with him, the Practical Catechism saw the light, 
and likewise the author remained in his desired obscurity. 

But in the mean time the book finding the reception which it 
merited 8 , the good doctor was by the same arguments con- 
strained to give way to the publishing of several other tracts 
which he had written upon heads that were then most perverted 
by popular error, as of Conscience, of Scandal, of Will-worship, of 
Resisting the lawful Magistrate, and of the Change of Church 
Government ; his name all this while concealed, and so preserved, 
till curiosity improving its guesses into confident asseverations, 
he was rumoured for the author, and as such published to the 
world by the London and Cambridge stationers, who without his 
knowledge reprinted those and other of his works. 

In the interim a treaty being laboured by his majesty, to com- 
pose (if it were possible) the unhappy differences in church and 
state, and in order thereunto the duke of Richmond and earl of 
Southampton being sent to London, doctor Hammond went along 

6 Which it merited.'} " King Charles I. in his last instructions to his 
children, recommended this among other eminent books, as a most safe and 
sound guide in religion : and his choice has been fully approved by his sub- 
jects. We see that while other institutions of Christian religion are in vogue 
for a time, and afterwards become antiquated and neglected, this rather grows 
than decays in its reputation, being composed with such solid learning, judg- 
ment, and piety, as will always endear it to serious persons of every rank and 
condition." Life of Dr. Hammond, prefixed to the Practical Catechism. 
" I also remember," (says Whiston, in the Memoirs of his own Life, vol. i. 
p. 10) " what my father told me; that after the restoration, almost all pro- 
fession of seriousness in religion would have been laughed out of counte- 
nance, under pretence of the hypocrisy of the former times, had not two very 
excellent and serious books, written by eminent royalists, put some stop to 
it : I mean The whole Duty of Man ; and Dr. Hammond's Practical Catechism.' 1 


as chaplain to them, where with great zeal and prudence he 
laboured to undeceive those seduced persons whom he had oppor- 
tunity to converse with : and when the treaty was solemnly ap- 
pointed at Uxbridge 7 , several divines being sent thither in 
behalf of the different parties, he, among other excellent men 
that adhered to the king, was made choice of to assist in that 
employment. And there (not to mention the debates between 
the commissioners, which were long since published by an honour- 
able hand) doctor Steward and master Henderson were at first 
only admitted to dispute ; though at the second meeting the 
other divines were called in : which thing was a surprize, and 
designed for such, to those of the king's part, who came as chap- 
lains and private attendants on the lords, but was before projected 
and prepared for by those of the presbyterian way. And in this 
conflict it was the lot of doctor Hammond to have master Vines 
for his antagonist, who, instead of tendering a scholastic disputa- 
tion, read from a paper a long divinity lecture, wherein were 
interwoven several little cavils and exceptions, which were meant 
for arguments. Doctor Hammond perceiving this, drew forth 
his pen and ink, and as the other was reading, took notes of what 
was said, and then immediately returned in order an answer to 
the several suggestions, which were about forty in number: 
which he did with that readiness and sufficiency as at once gave 
testimony to his ability, and to the evidence of the truth he 
asserted ; which, amidst the disadvantage of extempore against 
premeditation, dispelled with ease and perfect clearness all the 
sophisms that had been brought against him. 

It is not the present work to give an account of that whole 
dispute, or character the merits of those worthy persons who 
were engaged in it, either in that or the succeeding meetings ; 
especially since it was resolved by both parties that the trans- 
actions of neither side should be made public. But notwithstand- 
ing this, since divers persons addicted to the defence of a side, 
without any further consideration of truth or common honesty, 
have in this particular wounded the doctor's reputation, I shall 
take leave to say, that had the victories in the field, which were 
managed by the sword, been like this of the chamber and the 
tongue, a very easy act of oblivion must have atoned for them ; 
since what never was, without much industry might be secured 
from being remembered. The impudent falsity raised upon the 
7 At Uxbridge.] See Clarendon's Hist, of the Rebellion, book viii. 


doctor was this, that Mr. Vines utterly silenced him ; insomuch 
that he was fain to use this unheard-of stratagem to avoid his 
adversary^ demonstration, to swear by God and the holy angels, 
that though at present a solution did not occur to him, he could 
answer it. Concerning this we have the doctor's own account in 
a letter of his, bearing date Jan. 22, ann. 1655, directed to a 
friend who had advertised him of this report. 

" I have formerly been told within these few years that there 
went about a story much to my disparagement, concerning the 
dispute at Uxbridge (for there it was, not at Holdenby) with 
Mr. Vines ; but what it was I could never hear before : now I do, 
I can, I think, truly affirm, that no one part of it hath any degree 
of truth, save only that Mr. Vines did dispute against, and I 
defend, episcopacy. For as to the argument mentioned, I did 
never then, nor at any time of my life, (that I can remember) 
ever hear it urged by any. And for my pretended answer, I am 
both sure that I never called God and his holy angels to witness 
any thing in my life, nor ever swore one voluntary oath that I 
know of, (and sure there was then none imposed on me) and that 
I was not at that meeting conscious to myself of wanting ability 
to express my thoughts, or pressed with any considerable diffi- 
culty, or forced by any consideration to wave the answer of any 
thing objected. A story of that whole affair I am yet able to tell 
you, but I cannot think it necessary. Only this I may add, that 
after it I went to Mr. Marshall in my own and brethren's name, 
to demand three things : 1. Whether any argument proposed by 
them remained unanswered, to which we might yield farther 
answer ? 2. Whether they intended to make any report of the 
past disputation ; offering, if they would, to join with them in it, 
and to perfect a conference by mutual consent, after the manner 
of that between Dr. Reynolds and Mr. Hart 8 ? both which being 
rejected, the 3d was, to promise each other that nothing should 
be afterwards published by either without the consent or know- 
ledge of the other party. And that last he promised for himself 
and his brethren, and so we parted. 11 

But while these things were in doing, a canonry in Cli 
church in Oxford became vacant, which the king immediately 
bestowed 9 on doctor Hammond, though then absent ; whom like- 

8 And Mr. Hart.] See above, L\fe of Hooker, vol. iii. ji. 406, note. 

9 Immediately bestowed.] This was in the year 1044. Le Neve's Fasti, 
p. 234. 


wise the university chose their public orator : which preferments, 
though collated so freely, and in a time of exigence, he was with 
much difficulty wrought upon by his friends to accept, as minding 
nothing so much as a return to his old charge at Penshurst. 
But the impossibility of a sudden opportunity of going thither 
being evident unto him, he at last accepted ; and was soon after 
made chaplain in ordinary to his majesty. 

But these new employments no way diverted him from his 
former tasks ; for, according to his wonted method, he continued 
to address remedies to the increasing mischiefs of the times, and 
published the tracts of Superstition, Idolatry, Sins of Weakness 
and Wilfulness, Death-led Repentance, View of the Directory ; as 
also in answer to a Komanist, who, taking advantage of the pub- 
lic ruin, hoped to erect thereon trophies to the Capitol, his Vin- 
dication of the Lord Falkland, who was not long before fallen in 
another kind of war. 

But now the king's affairs declining every where, and Oxford 
being forced upon articles to surrender to the enemy, where after 
the expiration of six months all things were to be left to the lust 
and fury of a servile, and therefore insolent, conqueror ; though 
he foresaw a second and more fatal siege approaching, a leaguer 
of encamped inevitable mischiefs, yet he remitted nothing of his 
wonted industry, writing his tracts of Fraternal Correction, and 
Power of the Keys, and Apologies by Letter against the pulpit 
calumnies of Mr. Cheynel, and the exceptions taken at his Prac- 
tical Catechism. 

In the mean time his sacred majesty, sold by his Scottish into 
the hands of his English subjects, and brought a prisoner to 
Holdenby, where, stripped of all his royal attendants, and denied 
that common charity which is afforded the worst of malefactors, 
the assistance of divines *, though he with importunity desired it, 
he being taken from the parliament commissioners into the pos- 
session of the army, at last obtained that kindness from them 2 , 

1 The assistance of divines.] Compare Icon Basilikd, chap. xxiv. Upon their 
denying his majesty the attendance of his chaplains. 

2 That kindness from them.'] See Baxter's Life and Times, part i. p. 60. 
" While the king was at Hampton Court the mutable hypocrites first pre- 
tended an extraordinary care of his honour, liberty, safety, and conscience. 
They blamed the austerity of the parliament, who had denied him the attendance 
of his own chaplains, and of bis friends in whom he took most pleasure. 
They gave liberty for his friends and chaplains to come to him : they pre- 


(who were to be cruel at another rate) which was withheld by the 
two houses, and was permitted the service of some few of his 
chaplains, whom he by name had sent for, and among them of 
doctor Hammond. 

Accordingly the good doctor attended on his master in the 
several removes of Woburn, Caversham, and Hampton Court, as 
also thence into the Isle of Wight, where he continued till Christ- 
mas 1647; at which time his majesty's attendants were again 
put from him, and he amongst the rest. 

Sequestered from this his melancholic but most desired employ- 
ment, he returned again to Oxford ; where being chosen sub- 
dean, an office to which belongs much of the scholastic govern- 
ment of the college, and soon after proved to be the whole, (the 
dean 3 , for the guilt of asserting the rights of his majesty and the 
university in his station of vice-chancellor, being made a prisoner,) 
he undertook the entire management of all affairs, and discharged 
it with great sufficiency and admirable diligence, leaving his 
beloved studies to interest himself not only in moderating at divi- 
nity disputations, which was then an immediate part of his task, 
but in presiding at the more youthful exercises of sophistry, 
themes, and declamations ; redeeming still at night these vacui- 
ties of the day, scarce ever going to bed till after midnight, some- 
times not till three in the morning, and yet certainly rising to 
prayers at five. 

Nor did his inspection content itself in looking to the general 
performances of duty, but descended to an accurate survey of 

tended that they would save him from the incivilities of the parliament and 
Presbyterians. Whether this were while they tried what terms they could 
make with him for themselves, or while they acted any other part : it is cer- 
tain that the king's old adherents began to extol the army, and to speak 
against the Presbyterians more distastefully than before. When the parlia- 
ment offered the king propositions for concord, (which Vane's faction made 
as high and unreasonable as they could, that they might come to nothing) 
the army forsooth offer him proposals of their own, which the king liked 
better : but which of them to treat with he did not know. At last, on the 
sudden the judgment of the army changed, and they began to cry for justice 
against the king ; and with vile hypocrisy, to publish their repentance, and 
to cry God mercy for their kindness to the king, and confess that they were 
under a temptation : but in all this, Cromwell and Ireton, and the rest of the 
council of war appeared not : the instruments of all this work must be the 
common soldiers." 

3 The dean.] Dr. Samuel Fell, father of bishop Fell, the author of this Life 
of Dr. Hammond. See Walker's Sufferings of the Clergy, p. 102. 


every one's both practice and ability ; so that this large society 
of scholars appeared his private family, he scarce leaving any 
single person without some mark or other of both his charity and 
care, relieving the necessitous in their several wants of money and 
of books, shaming the vicious to sobriety, encouraging the inge- 
nuous to diligence, and finding stratagems to ensnare the idle to 
a love of study. But above all he endeavoured to prepare his 
charge for the reception of the impending persecution, that they 
might adorn their profession, and not at the same time suffer for 
a cause of righteousness, and as evil-doers. 

To this end he both admitted and solemnly invited all sober 
persons to his familiarity and converse ; and besides that, received 
them to his weekly private office of fasting and humiliation. 

But now the long-expected ruin breaking in with its full weight 
and torrent, the visitors 4 chafed with their former disappointments 
and delays, coming with hunters' stomachs, and design to boot, 
for to seize first and then devour the prey, by a new method of 
judicature being to kill and then take possession, the excellent 
doctor became involved in the general calamity. And whereas 
the then usual law of expulsion was immediately to banish into 
the wide world by beat of drum enjoining to quit the town within 
24 hours, upon pain of being taken and used as spies, and not to 
allow the unhappy exiles time for the dispose either of their pri- 
vate affairs, or stating the accounts of their respective colleges or 
pupils ; the reverend doctor Sheldon 5 , now lord bishop of London, 
and dean of his majesty's chapel royal, and doctor Hammond, 
were submitted to a contrary fate, and by an order from a com- 
mittee of parliament were restrained and voted to be prisoners in 
that place, from which all else were so severely driven. But such 
was the authority and command of exemplary virtue, that the 
person designed to succeed in the canonry of Christ church, 
though he had accepted of the place at London, and done his 
exercise for it at Oxford, acting as public orator in flattering there 
the then-pretending chancellor, yet he had not courage to pursue 

4 The visitors.'] For a full account of the Oxford Visitation, see Walker's 
Sufferings of the Clergy, part i. p. 122 44. Wood's Hist, and Antiquities, 
&c. vol. ii. p. 501 618. 4to. edit. Ayliffe's Antient and present state of the 
University of Oxford, vol. i. p. 21 3 39. 

5 Sheldon.'] Gilbert Sheldon, prebendary of Gloucester; bishop of London, 
October 23, 1660; archbishop of Canterbury July 14, 1663; died November 
9, 1677. 


his undertaking, but voluntarily relinquished that infamous rob- 
bery, and adhered to a less scandalous one in the country. And 
then the officer who was commanded to take doctor Sheldon and 
him into custody upon their designed removal, colonel Evelin, then 
governor of Wallingford-castle, (though a man of as opposite 
principles to church and churchmen as any of the adverse party) 
wholly declined the employment, solemnly protesting, that if they 
came to him they should be entertained as friends, and not as 

But these remorses proved but of little effect ; the prebend of 
Christ Church being suddenly supplied by a second choice, and 
Oxford itself being continued the place of their confinement: 
where accordingly the good doctor remained, though he were de- 
manded by his majesty to attend him in the Isle of Wight at the 
treaty there, which then was again reinforced. The pretence 
upon which both he and the reverend doctor Sheldon were refused 
was, that they were prisoners ; and probably the gaining that was 
the cause why they were so. But notwithstanding the denial of a 
personal attendance, the excellent prince required that assistance 
which might consist with absence, and at this time sent for a 
copy of that sermon which almost a year before he had heard 
preached in that place. The which sermon his majesty, and 
thereby the public, received with the accession of several others 
delivered upon various occasions. 

Doctor Hammond having continued about ten weeks in his 
restraint in Oxford, where he began to actuate his design of writ- 
ing Annotations on the New Testament, (nor was it dispropor- 
tionate that those sacred volumes, a great part of which was 
written in bonds, should be first commented upon by the very 
parallel suffering, and that the work itself should be so dedicated, 
and the expositor fitted for his task by being made like the author) 
by the interposition of his brother-in-law, sir John Temple, he had 
licence granted to be removed to a more acceptable confinement, 
to Clapham in Bedfordshire, the house in which his worthy friend 
sir Philip Warwick lived. Where soon after his arrival, that 
horrid mockery of justice, the rape and violence of all that is 
sacred, made more abominable by pretending to right and piety, 
the trial of the king, drew on ; and he being in no other capacity 
to interpose than by writing, drew up an Address to the general 
and council of officers, and transmitted it to them. And when 
that unexampled VILLAINY found this excuse, that it was such 


as could be pleaded for, and men in cool blood would dare to own 
and justify, he affixed his Reply to the suggestions of Ascham 
and Goodwin. And now, although he indulged to his just and 
almost infinite griefs, which were transported to the utmost 
bounds of sober passion, the affectionate personal respect he bore 
unto that glorious victim being added to the detestation due unto 
the guilt itself, of which no man was more sensible than he, who 
had strange antipathies to all sin, he gave not up himself to an 
unactive dull amazement, but with the redoubled use of fasting, 
tears, and solemn prayer, he resumed his wonted studies ; and 
besides his fitting the Annotations for the press, and his little 
tract of the Reasonableness of Christian Beligion, he now composed 
his Latin one against Blondel in the behalf of episcopacy. As to 
the first of which, (his Annotations,) the manner of its birth and 
growth was thus : 

Having written in Latin two large volumes in quarto of the 
way of interpreting the New Testament, with reference to the 
customs of the Jews and of the first heretics in the Christian 
church, and of the heathens, especially in the Grecian games, and 
above all the importance of the Hellenistical dialect, into which 
he had made the exactest search (by which means in a manner he 
happened to take in all the difficulties of that sacred book :) he 
began to consider that it might be more useful to the English 
reader, who was to be his immediate care, to write in our vulgar 
language and set every observation in its natural order, according 
to the guidance of the text. And having some years before col- 
lated several Greek copies of the New Testament, observed the 
variation of our English from the original, and made an entire 
translation of the whole for his private use ; being thus prepared, 
he cast his work into that form in which it now appears. The 
reasons of it need not to be here inserted, being set down by his 
own pen in his preface to his Annotations. 

The tractate against Blondel grew to its last form and constitu- 
tion by not unlike degrees, having a very different occasion from 
the last performance. The immediate antecedent cause is owned, 
and long ago presented to the world in that writing ; the more 
remote original is as follows. The late most learned primate of 
Armagh having received from David Blondel a letter of exception 
against his edition of Ignatius, he communicated it to doctor 
Hammond, desiring his sense of several passages therein con- 
tained, relating to the Valentinian heresy, episcopal and chor- 


episcopal power, and some emergent difficulties concerning them, 
from the canons of several Eastern councils. To all this the 
doctor wrote a peculiar answer, promising a fuller account if it 
would be useful. Upon the receipt whereof the archbishop being 
highly satisfied, returned his thanks, and laid hold of the promise ; 
which being accordingly discharged, became the provision (and 
gave materials) to a great part of the dissertations. The primate's 
letter ran in these words : 

" I have read with great delight and content your accurate 
Answer to the Objections made against the credit of Ignatius's 
Epistles, for which T do most heartily thank you, and am moved 
thereby farther to intreat you to publish to the world in Latin 
what you have already written in English against this objector, 
and that other, who for your pains hath rudely requitted you 
with the base appellation of Nebulo for the assertion of epis- 
copacy : to the end it may no longer be credited abroad that 
these two have so beaten down this calling, that the defence 
thereof is now deserted by all men, as by Lud. Capellus is inti- 
mated in his thesis of church government, at Sedan lately pub- 
lished ; which I leave unto your serious consideration, and all 
your godly labours to the blessing of our good God, in whom I 
evermore rest, 

" Your very loving friend 

and brother, 

" Eeygate in Surrey* " JA. ARMACHANUS." 

July 21, 1649." 

Now in this request the archbishop was so concerned, that he 
reinforced it by another letter of Aug. 30, and congratulated the 
performance by a third of Jan. 14. Both which, though very 
worthy to see the public light, are yet forborne, as several of the 
like kind from the reverend fathers and bishops of this, and our 
sister churches, as also from the most eminent for piety and 
learning of our own and the neighbouring nations : which course 
is taken not only in accordance to the desires and sentiments of 
the excellent doctor, who hated every thing that looked like 
ostentation ; but likewise to avoid the very unpleasing choice, 
either to take the trouble of recounting all the doctor's cor- 
respondencies, or bear the envy of omitting some. 

But to return to the present task and that of the good doctor, 
which now was to perfect his Commentaries on the New Testa- 


ment, and finish the Dissertations : amidst which cares he met 
with another of a more importunate nature, the loss of his dear 
mother, which had this unhappy accession, that in her sickness 
he could not be permitted, by reason of his being concerned in 
the proclamation that banished those that adhered to the king 
twenty miles from London, to visit her ; nor while she paid her 
latest debt to nature, to pay his earlier one of filial homage and 

A few months after, the rigour of that restraint with the 
declining of the year (a season judged less commodious for enter- 
prise) being taken off, he removed into Worcestershire, to West- 
wood, the house of the eminently loyal sir John Pakington ; where 
being settled and proceeding in the edition of those his labours 
which he had begun at Clapham, his majesty coming to Wor- 
cester, by his neighbourhood to that place, the good doctor, as he 
had the satisfaction personally to attend his sovereign, and the 
honour to receive a letter from his own hand of great importance, 
for the satisfaction of his loyal subjects concerning his adherence 
to the established religion of the church of England, wherein his 
royal father lived a saint and died a martyr ; so likewise had he 
on the other part the most immediate agonies for his defeat ; to 
which was added the calamity which fell upon the family where 
he dwelt, from the persecution and danger of the generous master 
of it. But it pleased God to give an issue out of both those 
difficulties, especially in the miraculous deliverance 6 of his sacred 
majesty : a dispensation of so signal an importance, that he 
allowed it a solemn recognition in his constant offices during his 
whole life, receiving that unusual interposition of Providence as a 
pledge from heaven of an arrier of mercies ; to use his own 
words, " That God who had thus powerfully rescued him from 
Egypt, would not suffer him to perish in the wilderness ; but 
though his passage be through the Red Sea, he would at last 
bring him into Canaan ; that he should come out of his tribula- 
tions as gold out of the fire, purified, but not consumed." 

But notwithstanding these reflexions, bottomed upon piety and 
reliance upon heaven, the present state of things had a quite 
different prospect in common eyes ; and the generality of men 
thinking their religion as troublesome a burthen as their loyalty, 

6 Miraculous deliverance.'] See True Narrative and Relation of his most 
Sacred Majesty's Escape from Worcester, on the 3d Sept. 1651, till his Arrival 
at Paris. Harleian Miscellany, fyc. 

VOL. iv. A a 


with the same prudence by which they changed their mild and 
gracious sovereign for a bloody TYRANT, began to seek a pompous 
and imperious church abroad, instead of a pious and afflicted one 
at home. To which event the Roman missionaries 7 gave their 
liberal contribution, affording their preposterous charity to make 
them proselytes who had no mind to be confessors or martyrs. 

7 Roman missionaries.'] It seems a fact beyond dispute, that the evils of 
these unhappy times were inflamed and aggravated by the machinations of 
many Romish incendiaries ; and that especially under the disguise of fanatics 
and agitators. In Foxes and Firebrands, or a Specimen of the Danger and 
Harmony of Popery and Separation, the following anecdote is related, in which 
Dr. Hammond bore a part. 

" Mr. John Crooke, sometime bookseller in St. Paul's church-yard, at 
the Ship, in London, and since stationer and printer to his most serene 
majesty in Dublin, told this story following unto Sir James Ware, knight, 
now deceased. 

"Anno 1656, the reverend divine Dr. Henry Hammond, being one day in 
the next shop to this said John Crooke's, and there reading the works of 
St. Ambrose, a red-coat casually came in, and looked over this divine's 
shoulder, and there read the Latin as perfect as himself, which caused the 
doctor to admire that a red-coat should attain to that learning. Then speak- 
ing unto him, he demanded how he came to that science ? The red-coat 
replied, * By the Holy Spirit.' The doctor hereupon replied, * I will try 
thee further :' and so called for a Greek author, which this red-coat not only 
read, but construed. The doctor to try him further called for the Hebrew 
Bible; and so for several other books, in which this red-coat was very 
expert. At last the doctor, recollecting with himself, called for a Welsh 
Bible, and said, ' If thou beest inspired, read me this book, and construe 
it.' But the red-coat being at last catched, replied, * I have given thee 
satisfaction enough : I will not satisfy thee further ; for thou wilt not believe, 
though an angel came from heaven.' The doctor smelling out the deceit, 
caused the apprentice to go for a constable ; who being brought to the shop, 
the doctor told the constable he had something to say against this red- 
coat ; and bade him bring him before Oliver Cromwell, then called the lord 
protector. The red-coat being brought to White Hall, and examined, he, 
after a rustic manner, thoued and theed Oliver : but being suspected, it was 
demanded, where he quartered. It being found out, at the Devil Tavern, 
the doctor intreated his chamber might be searched : where they found an 
old chest filled partly with his wearing apparel, as also with several papers, 
and seditious popish books ; amongst which there being a pair of boots, and 
papers stuck in one of them, they found a parchment bull of licence to this 
impostor, granted under several names, to assume what function or calling he 
pleased. These being brought before Oliver ; for what reasons it is unknown, 
yet the red-coat escaped ; bringing several proofs of what great service he 
had done : and the greatest affliction which was laid on him, was banishment : 
and what proceeded further we know not." Foxes, &c., part ii. p. 101, edit. 
1682. See also, in vol. iii. of this work, Life of Jewel, p. 366. 


Hereupon the doctor thought it highly seasonable to write his 
tract of Schism, and oppose it to that most popular topic whereby 
they amused and charmed their fond disciples. And whereas 
the love of novelty prevailed in several other instances, as in 
controlling the use and authority of the Scripture, defending 
incestuous marriages, polygamy, divorce, the anabaptizing of 
infants, the schismatical ordination of ministers by mere pres- 
byters, and the disuse of the festivals of the church ; he applied 
his antidotes to each: by which means he made himself the 
common mark of opposition to all parties. For (besides the 
assaults from a whole class of antagonists which the Disserta- 
tions had engaged against him, and to which he was preparing 
his defence,) upon the Romanists' part he was charged by the 
Catholic Gentleman and his armour-bearer S. W. ; on the pres- 
byterian account by Mr. Gawdry and Mr. Jeanes ; and in the 
behalf of the independents and anabaptists by master Owen and 
master Tombs : not to mention several others that sought them- 
selves a name by being his gainsayers, but failed of their purpose 
by bringing only spite and passion into the quarrel, and so were 
to be answered only by pity and silence. 

Nor did he only stand and keep at bay this multiplied 
contest, but (as if this had not been task enough) besides the 
intercurrent offices of life, his reception of visits, answering of 
letters, his constant preaching and catechising, he found leisure 
to write his tract of Fundamentals, his Parcenesis, his Review of 
the Annotations ; and amidst all, to be in debt to his importunate 
antagonists for nothing but their railing, leaving that the only 
thing unanswered. Nay more than so, brought several of them 
even under their own hands to recognize their sense of their undue 
procedure used by them unto him : which their acknowledgments 
yet remain, and are producible upon occasion. 

And would to God he had met no other opposition ; for in 
entrance on these conflicts that strength of body which before 
had faithfully attended his indefatigable mind began to fail him, 
and those four torments of disease, which single have been 
judged a competent trial of human sufferance, the stone, the 
gout, the cholic, and the cramp, (the last of which was to him as 
tyrannous as any of the former) became in a manner the con- 
stant exercise of his Christian fortitude and patience ; affording 
him from this time to the end of his life very rare and short 
intervals of vigorous health. 

A a2 


But among all his labours, although polemic discourses were 
otherwise most uneasy, as engaging to converse with men in 
passion, a thing he naturally abhorred, his Parcenesis, a per- 
suasive and practical tract (which now he wrote, and which upon 
that account was exceeding agreeable to his desires) cost him 
most throes and pangs of birth, as having been penned first in 
tears, and then in ink. For however with great serenity he 
entertained all other accidents, having habituated himself to his 
beloved doctrine of submitting not to the will of God alone, but 
to his wisdom, both which he was used to say were perfectly one 
thing in that blest agent (and accordingly in the most dismal 
appearance of event made this his constant motto, rOltO 1 ? IT D3 
Even this for good) ; yet in this instance the tenderness of his 
soul seemed to have melted his resolution : the occasion of that 
treatise being the interdict 8 of Jan. 1655, which disabled the 

8 The interdict."] That declaration, so far as it concerned the clergy, was in 
these words. 

" His highness, by the advice of his council, doth also publish, declare, 
and order, that as no person, or persons aforesaid, do, from and after the 
first day of January, 1655, keep in their houses or families, as chaplains, or 
school-masters, for the education of their children, any sequestered or ejected 
minister, fellow of a college, or schoolmaster : nor permit any of their chil- 
dren to be taught by such, upon pain of being proceeded against, &c. And 
that no person, who for delinquency or scandal, hath been sequestered or 
ejected, shall, from and after the first day of January aforesaid, preach in any 
public place, or at any private meeting of any other persons than those of 
his own family : nor shall administer baptism, or the Lord's supper, or marry 
any persons, or use the book of Common Prayer, or the forms of prayer 
therein contained, upon pain that every person so offending, in any of the 
premises shall be proceeded against as by the said orders is provided and 
directed." But the extreme cruelty of this declaration seems to have pre- 
vented its being long and generally inforced. See Walker's Sufferings of the 
Clergy, part i. p. 1 94. In reference to this interdict the following anecdote 
is told in Parr's Life of Archbishop Ussher, p. 75. " According to the desires 
of many of the episcopal clergy, he went, and used his utmost endeavours 
with Cromwell, for the taking off this restraint, which was at last promised 
(though with some difficulty), that they should not be molested, provided 
they meddled not with any matters relating to his government. But when 
the lord primate went to him a second time, to get this promise ratified, and 
put into writing, he found him under his chirurgeon's hands, who was 
dressing a great boil which he had on his breast. So Cromwell prayed the 
lord primate to sit down a little ; and that, when he was dressed, he would 
speak with him. Whilst this was a doing, Cromwell said to the lord primate, 
If this core (pointing to the boil) were once out I sh<>nld quickly be well. I" 
which the good bishop replied, / dnuht the core lies deeper. There is a core 


loyal suffering clergy from doing any ministerial act ; which he 
resented with the highest passion ; not only upon the general 
account of God's more immediate displeasure to the nation 
legible therein, but (what he had much less reason to do) in 
reference to his own particular ; he looking on this dispensation 
of Providence as God's pronouncing him unworthy to do him 
service, " the reproaching " (to use his own words) " his former 
unprofitableness, by casting him out as straw to the dunghill." 
Nor should any consideration that terminated on himself have 
persuaded him at all to regard that tyrannous injunction, had 
not charity to the family where he was, made him content to 
admit of an expedient that secured all real duties, whilst he for 
some short time forbore that attendance on the altar which was 
the very joy of his life. 

And now, though his physicians had earnestly forbidden his 
accustomed fastings, and his own weaknesses gave forcible suf- 
frages to their advice, yet he resumed his rigours, esteeming this 
calamity such a one as admitted no exception, which should not 
be outlived, but that it became men to be martyrs too, and 
deprecate even in death. 

While he thus earnestly implored the aids of heaven, and 
exhorted unto present duty, he omitted not a third expedient, by 
securing a succession to the church, thereby to preserve its future 
being. And this he did not only in reference to the superior 
order of episcopacy, which it has pleased God now to secure by 
another more gracious method of his favour, and even miraculous 
goodness ; but also in the inferior attendance on the altar : the 
latter of which as it was an enterprise suiting well with his heroic 
mind, so was it no way answering his narrow fortunes. The thing 
in his design was this. Whereas the ancient stock of clergymen 
were by this edict in a manner rendered useless, and the church 
was at best like the Roman state in its first beginning, res unius 
cetatis populus virorum, a nation of ancient persons hastening to 

at the heart that must be taken out, or else it will not be well. Ah ! replied 
he, seeming unconcerned, so there is indeed, and sighed. But when the 
lord primate began to speak with him concerning the business he came 
about, he answered him to this effect ; that he had since better considered it, 
having advised with his council about it, and that they thought it not safe 
for him to grant liberty of conscience to those sort of men, who are restless 
and implacable enemies to him and his government; and so he took his 
leave of him, though with good words and outward civility." 


their graves, who must in a few years be wasted ; he projected 
by pensions unto hopeful persons in either university, to maintain 
a seminary of youth, instituted in piety and learning, upon the 
sober principles and old establishment of the Anglican Church. 
In which work, though the assistances he presumed on failed in a 
great measure, yet somewhat not inconsiderable 9 in this kind by 
himself and friends he did achieve, and kept on foot until his 
death. In his instructions to them whom he employed in this 
affair, he gave in charge " carefully to seek out such as were 
piously inclined, and to prefer that qualification before unsancti- 
fied good parts ;" adding this as a certain maxim, " that exem- 
plary virtue must restore the church." 

And whereas that black defeat at Worcester, raising the inso- 
lent tyrant here unto that greatness which almost outwent the 
impudence of his hopes, made him to be feared by foreign na- 
tions almost as much as hated by his own, the loyal sufferers 
abroad became subjected to the worst effect of banishment, and 
were even there expelled and driven from their flights : so paral- 
leling in their exigencies the most immediate objects of that 
monster's fury. The excellent doctor, to whose diffusive virtue 
the limits of the nation were too straight a circle, thought this 
a season to exert his charity : accordingly, though this greatest 

9 Not inconsiderable.'] One of the persons upon whom a portion of this 
bounty was most deservedly bestowed was Isaac Barrow, afterwards the great 
precursor of Sir Isaac Newton, and the pride of the English pulpit ; and another 
was the Rev. Clement Ellis, a divine whose writings in practical theology, for 
their eminent and fervent piety, for soundness of doctrine, and for a vigorous, 
unaffected, and manly style, have been very rarely surpassed ; and deserve to 
be much more extensively known, than it is apprehended they now are, or 
ever have been. 

" He received several donations towards his subsistence at Oxford from 
unknown hands ; with anonymous letters to certify, that those sums were in 
consideration of his father's sufferings, and to encourage his progress in his 
studies. Several such presents and letters he had, both before and after his 
being in holy orders, without his knowing from whence they came : but after 
the restoration of the church and royal family, he had some reason to believe 
that they came from Dr. (Jeremy) Taylor and Dr. Hammond, being part of 
those collections of money, put into their hands by charitable and well- 
disposed persons, for the support and encouragement of suffering loyalty." 
Veneer's Account of the Life and Writings of Clement Ellis, M.A. prefixed 
to the work entitled, The Scripture Catechist ; or the whole Religion of a 
Christian, 1738, 8vo. See also the Life of Dr. Isaac Barrow, prefixed to his 
Theological Works. 


duty were solemnly declared treason, he then continued to send 
over several sums for their relief. 

Which practice of his, by the surprise of the person entrusted, 
being discovered to the tyrant, he was alarmed with the expec- 
tation of that usage which was then a certain consequent of such 
meritorious acts. But this adventure brought nothing of amaze- 
ment or disturbance to the doctor, his most importunate reflec- 
tion being only this, that he seemed to have gained an opportu- 
nity of saying something very home to that fierce monster con- 
cerning his foul deeds, and to discourse the appropriate ways 
remaining to alleviate at least, if not to expiate for them ; which 
he purposed within himself to press to the highest advantage : 
and indeed this was the only issue of that so threatening accident, 
God's restraining power interposing here, and exemplifying upon 
him what in others he was wont to observe, " that they who least 
considered hazard in the doing of their duties fared still best." 

And this success as it was indeed, and accordingly he frequently 
acknowledged it for, an eminent act of the Divine Providence ; so 
we may likewise take it as a signal testimony of the commanding 
worth the doctor had, which extorted a reverence to his person 
from that worst of men, and rendered him a sanctuary, perhaps 
the only one this architect of mischief stood in awe of, and even 
his sacrilege preserved inviolate. 

Nor did this danger being over, as with others in all likelihood 
it would have done, persuade to caution for the future ; but with 
the wonted diligence that formerly he used, he immediately pro- 
ceeded, and cheerfully went on in the pursuit of his heroic 

Amidst these diversions grew up the labours of this hero, the 
issue of his brain, being not only midwifed into the world like 
natural births with torment and disease, but written, like Csesar's 
Commentaries, in dangers and in war. And now besides the 
replies which the importunities of master Owen, master Jeanes, 
and master Tombs drew from him, W. S. continuing his loud 
clamours and impudent triumph at his own folly, the good doctor 
suffered himself to be engaged on that long answer, which proved 
the last of that kind he made, excepting that single sheet put out 
a few months before his death, as a specimen to what desperate 
shifts the patrons of the Roman cause were driven : for though 
some of his friends advised him to remit that divinity buffoon to 
be answered in his own way by a slighter pen, he by no means 


would admit of the proposal, resolving it unfit that another should 
do in his behalf what was indecent for himself to do ; and though 
there was no respect to be had of W. S. yet was the sacred cause 
to be managed with reverence and awful regard. While this was 
in hand the second Review of the Annotations came to light, as 
also the Exposition on the Book of Psalms, and soon after the pa- 
cific Discourse of God? s Grace and Decrees, ventilated between him 
and his dear friend the reverend and most learned Dr. Sanderson, 
now lord bishop of Lincoln, occasioned by some letters which 
had passed on that subject between the said doctor and the reve- 
rend Dr. Pierce. To this immediately succeeded the Latin tract 
of Confirmation, in answer to the exceptions of Mr. Daille, which 
was then prepared for the press, though detained much longer 
upon prudential or rather charitative considerations, a respect to 
which was strictly had in ah 1 the doctor's writings ; it being his 
care not only to publish sober and convincing, but withal season- 
able, useful truths. 

He was likewise enterprizing a farther Comnwn[ary on the Old 
Testament, and began on the Book of Proverbs, and finished a 
third part of it : but the completion of this and all other the 
great intendments of the equally learned, pious, and indefatigable 
author, received here a full period : it pleasing the Divine Provi- 
dence to take to himself this high example of all moral and 
Christian excellencies in a season when the church and nation 
would least have been deprived of his aids towards the cementing 
of those breaches which then began to offer at a closure. 

It is easily to be presumed the reader will not be disobliged, if 
we a while divert from this remaining sadder part of the under- 
taken narrative, and entertain him with a survey of the personal 
accomplishments of the excellent doctor. The particulars where- 
of would not readily have fallen into the thread of history, or at 
least had been disjointed there, and under disadvantage; but 
will be made to stand in a much fairer light, when represented to 
the view by way of character and picture. 

And therefore to this prospect we cheerfully invite all eyes in 
whose esteem virtue itself is lovely. 


Tin. frame of his body was such as suited with the noble use 
to which it was designed, the* entertaining a most pun- and active 


soul, but equally to the advantages of strength and comeliness. 
His stature was of just height and all proportionate dimensions, 
avoiding the extremes of gross and meagre, advantaged by a 
graceful carriage, at once most grave, and yet as much obliging. 
His face carried dignity and attractives in it, scarce ever clouded 
with a frown, or so much as darkened by reservedness. His eye 
was quick and sprightful, his complexion clear and florid, so that 
(especially in his youth) he had the esteem of a very beauteous 
person ; which was lessened only by the colour of his hair : 
though if the sentence of other ages and climates be of value, 
that reasonably might be vouched as an accession to it. 

To this outward structure was joined that strength of consti- 
tution, patient of severest toil and hardship ; insomuch that for 
the most part of his life, in the fiercest extremity of cold, he took 
no other advantage of a fire, than at the greatest distance that 
he could, to look upon it. As to diseases (till immoderate study 
had wrought a change) he was in a manner only liable to fevers, 
which a too constant temperance did in a great measure prevent, 
and still assisted to relieve and cure. 

Next to his frame of body, if we survey his inward faculties, 
we shall find them just unto the promises of his outward shape. 
His sight was quick to an unusual degree ; insomuch that if by 
chance he saw a knot of men, a flock of sheep, or herd of cattle, 
being engaged in discourse, and not at all thinking of it, he would 
involuntary cast up their number, which others after long delays 
could hardly reckon. His ear was accurate and tuned to his 
harmonious soul, so that having never learned to sing by book or 
study, he would exactly perform his part of many things to a 
harpsicon or theorbo, and frequently did so in his more vigorous 
years after the toil and labour of the day, and before the remain- 
ing studies of the night. His elocution was free and graceful, 
prepared at once to charm and to command his audience : and 
when with preaching at his country charge he had in some degree 
lost the due manage of his voice, his late sacred majesty, by 
taking notice of the change, became his master of music, and 
reduced him to his ancient decent modulation ; a kindness which 
the doctor very gratefully acknowledged to his dying day, and 
reported not only as an instance of the meek and tender conde- 
scensions of that gracious prince, but improved to persuade others 
by so great an example to that most friendly office of telling per- 
sons of their faults, without which very commonly (as here it 


happened) men must be so far from amending their errors, that 
it is morally impossible they should ever know them. 

As to his more inferior faculties, we must allow the first place 
to his invention, his richest, altogether unexhausted treasure, 
whose Sowings were with that full torrent, that for several years 
after his choice of subject, which generally he had in prospect 
beforehand, a little meditation on the Saturday night made up his 
sermon : but in the last twelve of his life, finding the recollection 
of his thoughts disturb his sleep, he remitted the particular care 
of the composition and method of his future discourse to the 
Sunday morning, wherein an hour's consideration fitted him to 
the office of the day. With the like swiftness he dispatched his 
writings, usually composing faster than his amanuensis, though a 
very dexterous person, could transcribe after him. His Consi- 
derations of present Necessity concerning Episcopacy were drawn 
up * after ten of clock at night in a friend's chamber, who pro- 
fesses, that sitting by all the while, he remembers not that he 
took off pen from paper till he had done; and the very next 
morning, it being fully approved by the bishop of Salisbury, he 
sent it to the press : to which work he could have no premedita- 
tion or second thoughts, he being that very night after supper 
employed by the before-mentioned lord bishop of Salisbury, iu>\\ 
of Winchester 3 , on that task. So likewise he began his tract of 
Scandal at eleven at night, and finished it before he went to bed. 
Nor was this a peculiar or extraordinary thing with him, but 
most customary ; five sheets having amidst his other diversions 
been sundry times his one day's work ; adding to it so much of 
the night as he frequently borrowed from sleep and supper. And 
indeed such were his diversions, so many and so importunate, 
that notwithstanding this incredible ease of writing, it is hardly 
imaginable how he could compass the tithe of what he did. For 
he that shall consider his laborious way, immersed in almost infi- 
nite quotations, to which the turning over books and consulting 
several editions were absolutely needful ; his obligation to read 
not only classic authors, but the more recent abortions of the 
press, wherein he proved frequently concerned; his perusal of 
the writings of his friends and strangers intended to be public ; 

1 Were drawn upJ] They consisted of fourteen pages in quarto of close and 
small printing. 
3 Winchester J] Brian Duppa. 


his review of his own works, and correcting them with his own 
hand sheet by sheet as they came forth, which he did to all his 
latter tracts ; his reception of visits, whether of civility, or for 
resolution of conscience, or information in points of difficulty, 
which were numerous, and great devourers of his time ; his 
agency for men of quality, providing them schoolmasters for their 
children, and chaplains in their houses, in which affair he had set 
up a kind of office of address ; his general correspondencies by 
letter, whereof some cost him ten, others twenty, thirty, forty, 
nay sixty sheets of paper, and ever took up two days of the week 
entirely to themselves ; the time exhausted by his sicknesses, 
which in the later years of his life gave him but short and seldom 
truce, and always made it necessary for him not to stir from his 
chair or so much as read a letter for two hours after every meal, 
failance wherein being certainly revenged by a fit of the gout ; 
his not only constant preaching and instructing the family where 
he was, and his visiting the sick both there and in the neighbour- 
hood ; but amidst all, his sure returns of prayer, so frequent and 
so constant as certainly to challenge to themselves a great por- 
tion of the day : he, I say, that shall compute and sum up this, 
the particulars whereof are nakedly set down without any strain- 
ing of the truth or flourish of expression, must be to seek what 
point of vacant time remained yet undisposed ; I do not say to 
write books, but even to breathe and rest a little in. 

After a serious reflection on the premises, and full debate 
thereon, the account given by that excellent person who had the 
happiness of being the nearest and most constant witness of the 
before recited severals, seems the best and chiefly satisfactory 
that possibly can be made ; that he gained time for his writing 
books by the time he spent in prayer, whilst (a more than ordi- 
nary assistance attending his devotions) his closet proved his 
library, and he studied most upon his knees. 

As to his memory, it was serviceable, but not officious ; faith- 
ful to things and business, but unwillingly retaining the contex- 
ture and punctualities of words : which defect he frequently 
lamented, it being harder with him to get one sermon by heart 
than to pen twenty. 

His way of speech and faculty of communicating notions was 
sufficiently happy, having only this best kind of defect, exuberance 
and surplusage of plenty, the tide and torrent of his matter being 
not easily confined by periods ; whereby his style, though round 


and comprehensive, was incumbered sometimes by parentheses, 
and became difficult to vulgar understandings : but by the use of 
writing, and his desire to accommodate himself to all capacities, 
he in his latter years had mastered that defect, which was so 
slight, that notwithstanding it, he deserved from the most accu- 
rate judge and greatest master of English rhetoric which this age 
hath given, his late sacred majesty, this character and testimony, 
" That he was the most natural orator he ever heard." 

His judgment, as in itself the highest faculty, so was it the 
most eminent among his natural endowments : for though the 
finding out of the similitudes of different things, wherein the 
fancy is conversant, is usually a bar to the discerning the dispa- 
rities of similar appearances, which is the business of discretion, 
and that store of notions which is laid up in memory assists 
rather confusion than choice, upon which grounds the greatest 
clerks are frequently not the wisest men ; he had, to his sufficient 
memory and incomparable invention, a clear and discerning judg- 
ment ; and that not only in scholastical affairs and points of 
learning, which the arguings, and besides them the designment 
of his writings manifest beyond dispute, but in the concerns of 
public nature both of church and state, wherein his guess was 
usually as near to prophecy as any man's ; as also in the little 
mysteries of private manage, by which upon occasion he has un- 
ravelled the studied cheats of great artificers in that liberal 
science, wherein particularly he vindicated a person of honour 
for whom he was entrusted, and assisted frequently his friends in 
their domestic intercurrent difficulties. 

As to acquired habits and abilities in learning, his writings 
having given the world sufficient account of them, there remains 
only to observe, that the range and compass of his knowledge 
filled the whole circle of the arts, and reached those sevcrals. 
which single do exact an entire man unto themselves, and full 
age. To be accurate in the grammar and idioms of the tongues, 
and then as a rhetorician to make all their graces serve his elo- 
quence ; to have traversed ancient, and yet be no stranuvr in 
modern writers ; to be studied in philosophy, and familiarly 
versed in all the politer classic authors ; to be learned in school- 
divinity, and a master in church antiquity. perfect and ready in 
the sense of fathers, councils, ecclesiastical historians and lit ur<_ 
to have devoured so much and yet digested it, is a rarity in nature 
and in diligence which has but few examples. 


But after all we must take leave to say, and do it upon sober 
recollection, that the doctor's learning was the least thing in him : 
the scholar was here less eminent then the Christian. His specu- 
lative knowledge, that gave light to the most dark and difficult 
proposals, became eclipsed by the more dazzling lustre of his 
practick. In the catalogue of his virtues, his chastity and tempe- 
rance may claim the earliest place, as being the sacrists to the 
rest, and in him were therefore only not the greatest of his excel- 
lencies, because every thing else was so. 

And first, his chaste thoughts, words and carriage so disciplined 
his lower faculties, as not only restrained through all the heats of 
youth, made more than usually importunate by the full vigour 
of a high and sanguine constitution, (which his escape he grate- 
fully referred unto the only mercy of almighty God,) but gave a 
detestation of all those verbal follies, that have not only the allow- 
ance of being harmless mirth, but the repute of wit and gaiety of 
humour ; so that the scurrilous jest could sooner obtain his tears 
in penance for it, than the approbation of a smile ; and all ap- 
proaches to this sin he looked upon not only with an utter disal- 
lowance in his will, but a kind of natural abhorrence and antipathy 
in his lower outward faculties. 

In his first remove to Penshurst he was persuaded by his 
friends that the matrimonial state was needful to the bearing off 
those houshold cares and other intercurrent troubles which his 
condition then brought with it ; and on this ground he gave some 
ear to their advices : which he did then more readily, for that 
there was a person represented to him, of whose virtue, as well as 
other more-usually-desired accomplishments, he had been long 
before well satisfied. But being hindered several times by little 
unexpected accidents, he finally laid down all his pretensions, 
upon a ground of perfect self-denial ; being informed that one of 
a fairer fortune and higher quality than his was, or else was like 
to be, and consequently one who in common account would prove 
the better match, had kindness for her. Having thus resolved, 
the charity of his mother, who undertook the manage of his 
family, became a seasonable assistant and expedient in this single 
state ; till after several years her age making those cares too 
great a burthen for her shoulders, he again was induced to resume 
his thoughts of marriage. But the national disturbances (that 
afterwards brake out in war and ruin) appearing then in ferment, 
he was again diverted by recollecting the apostle's advice, (1 Cor. 


vii. 26.) enforced upon his thoughts by the reading of St. Jerom's 
epistle to Agereuchia, where after glorious elogies of marriage, 
the father concluded in an earnest dehortation from it, upon a 
representation of a like face of things ; the Goths then breaking 
into Italy, as they before had done into the other near parts of 
the Roman empire, and filling all with slaughter, cruelty, and ruin. 
Upon which prospect the good doctor casting a serious eye, and 
with prophetic sorrows and misgivings fearing a parallel in this 
our nation, the second time deposited his conjugal intendments, 
and thencefore courted and espoused (what he preserved invio- 
late) unto his death, the more eminent perfection of spotless 
virgin chastity. 

His appetite was good, but the restraint of it was very eminent 
and extraordinary ; for his diet was of the plainest meats, and 
commonly not only his dishes, but the parts of them were such as 
most others would refuse. Sauces he scarce ever tasted of, but 
often expressed it his wonder how rational creatures should eat 
for any thing but health, since he that did eat or drink that which 
might cause a fit of the stone or gout, though a year after, therein 
unmanned himself, and acted as a beast. So that his self-denials 
were quite contrary to the usual ones ; for considering the time 
lost in eating, and the vacancy succeeding it, his meals were the 
greatest pressure, and his fasting-day the most sensual part of 
his week. 

In the time of his full and more vigorous health he seldom did 
eat or drink more than once in twenty-four hours, and some fruit 
towards night ; and two days in every week, and in Lent and 
Ember-week three days, he eat but once in thirty-six. Nor did 
he ever with so much regret submit unto any prescript, as whon 
his physicians, after his great fever that he had in Oxford, 
required him to eat suppers. Which severity of injunction he 
soon shook off, and returned to his beloved abstinence, until n- 
newed infirmities brought him back unto the penance of more 
indulgence to himself. 

As he had the greatest indifference to what he eat, so had he 
the greatest observation too, especially when it came to be made 
point of diet and prescription ; for in this case he was most exact, 
never tasting of any prohibited meats, though some of them had 
before the advantage of being customary towards their seeming 
necessary. And herein his palate was so tractable and subduod 
to the dictates of an higher choice, that ho really thought no 


meat pleasant, but in proportion to its wholesomeness : even his 
beloved apples he would oft say he would totally abandon, as soon 
as they should appear to be no more than barely innocent, and not 
of use. And if by chance or inadvertency he had at any time 
tasted of an interdicted dish, as soon as he perceived it, he 
discovered a dislike both with himself and what he had been 
surprized with. 

The carving at the table he always made his province, which 
he said he did as a diversion to keep him from eating over-much : 
but certainly that practice had another more immediate cause, a 
natural distributiveness of humour, and a desire to be employed 
in the relief of every kind of want of every person. The report, 
and much more the sight, of a luxurious feeder would turn his 
stomach, so that he was in more danger to be sick with others 1 
surfeits than his own ; charity seeming a part of his com- 
plexion, while he performed a natural spontaneous penance for 
his neighbour's vice, as well as a deliberate one in sorrowing 
for it. 

His temperance in sleep resembled that of his meats, midnight 
being the usual time of his going to rest, and four or five, and 
very rarely six, the hour of his rising. There was scarce any 
thing he resented so much in his infirmities and multiplied dis- 
eases as their having abridged him of his night-studies, professing 
thereby he lost not only his greatest pleasure, but highest advan- 
tage in reference to business. And in his later time of weakness, 
when to take benefit of a gentle breathing sweat, which usually 
came in the morning, he had been engaged by his physician to 
continue in bed till it was over ; and upon complaint of costive- 
ness he was on the other side directed to rise somewhat early in 
the morning ; this latter injunction he looked upon as a mere 
rescue and deliverance, often mentioning it with thanks, as if it 
had been an eminent favour done him. 

His disposal of himself in the other parts of time was to per- 
petual industry and diligence: he not only avoided, but bore a 
perfect hate, and seemed to have a forcible antipathy to idleness, 
and scarcely recommended any thing in his advices with that con- 
cern and vigour, as to be furnished always with somewhat to do. 
This he proposed as the best expedient both for innocence and 
pleasure ; assuring that no burthen is more heavy or temptation 
more dangerous, than to have time lye on one's hand ; the idle 
man's brain being not only (as he worded it) the Devil's shop. 


but his kingdom too, a model of and an appendage unto hell, a 
place given up to torment and to mischief. Besides those portions 
of time which the necessities of nature and of civil life extorted 
from him, there was not a minute of the day which he left vacant. 
When he walked abroad, which he did not so much to recreate 
himself, as to obey the prescripts of his physician, he never failed 
to take a book with him, and read all the while: and in his 
chamber also he had one lay constantly open, out of which his 
servant read to him while he was dressing and undressing ; by 
which one piece of husbandry in short space he dispatched several 
considerable volumes. 

His way was still to cast into paper all his observations, and 
direct them to his present purposes ; wherein he had an incre- 
dible dexterity, scarce ever reading any thing which he did not 
make subservient in one kind or other. He was used to say, 
" he could not abide to talk with himself, 1 '' and therefore was so 
diligently provided of that which he called " better company." 
In his sicknesses, if they were not so violent to make the recol- 
lection of thoughts impossible, he never intermitted study, but 
rather re-inforced it then as the most appropriate revulsive and 
diversion of pain. The gout by its most frequent and importu- 
nate returns exceeded his other maladies ; in which although the 
first most furious assaults were sure to beat him from his study, 
and for a time confine him to his bed, yet as soon as he had reco- 
vered his chair, he resumed his pen too, and plyed it as hard as 
though he had ailed nothing. 

Next to downright idleness he disliked slow and dilatory under- 
takings, thinking it a great folly to spend that time in gazing 
upon business which should have served for the doing of it. In 
his own practice he never considered longer than till he could 
discern whether the thing proposed was fit or not : when that 
was seen, he immediately set to work. When he had perfected 
one business, he could not endure to have his thoughts lie fallow, 
but was presently consulting what next to set about. 

But when we reckon up and audit the expences of the doctor's 
time, we cannot pass his constant tribute of it paid by him to 
heaven in the offices of prayer; which took up so liberal propor- 
tions of each day unto itself for the ten last years of his life, ,-m<l 
probably the preceding. Besides occasional and supernumerary 
addresses, his certain perpetual returns exceeded David's seven 
times a day. As MM.M .is he was ready (which was usually early) 


he prayed in his chamber with his servant, in a peculiar form 
composed for that purpose. After this he retired to his own more 
secret devotions in his closet. Betwixt ten and eleven in the 
morning he had a solemn intercession in reference to the national 
calamities : to this after a little distance succeeded the morning 
office of the church, which he particularly desired to perform in 
his own person, and would by no means accept the ease of having 
it read by any other. In the afternoon he had another hour of 
private prayer, which on Sundays he enlarged, and so religiously 
observed, that if any necessary business or charity had diverted 
him at the usual time, he repaired his soul at the cost of his body ? 
and, notwithstanding the injunctions of his physicians, which in 
other cases he was careful to obey, spent the supper- time therein. 
About five of the clock the solemn private prayers for the nation, 
and the evening service of the church returned. At bedtime his 
private prayers closed the day : and after all, even the night was 
not without its office, the LI. Psalm being his designed midnight 
entertainment 3 . 

In his prayers as his attention was fixed and steady, so was it 
inflamed with passionate fervors, insomuch that very frequently 
his transport threw him prostrate on the earth ; his tears also 
would interrupt his words : the latter happening not only upon 
the pungent exigencies of present or impending judgments, but in 
the common service of the church : which, notwithstanding his 
concealments, being taken notice of by a person of good suffi- 
ciency, once a member of his house in Oxford, that became of 
late years a proselyte to the new extemporary way, he, among his 
other topics whereby he thought to disparage set forms, used in 
discourse to urge the heartless coldness of them, and to adorn his 
triumph, would make it his solemn wonder how a person of so 
good parts as Dr. Hammond was certainly master of, could find 
motive for his tears 4 in the confession in the beginning of the 

3 Midnight entertainment. ,] Compare above vol. iii. p. 6. n. Life of Bishop 

4 Motive for his tears.'] " In the antient forms of the church, and therefore 
in ours, which are mostly antient, there is a strength, an energy, a savour, an 
unction, I know not what to call it, not to be found in the composition of 
modern prayers, not even those (begging the pardon of the composers) which 
are premeditated, and drawn up with deliberation ; and much less of others 
that are unpremeditated and extemporary. For instance, the Te Deum of 
St. Ambrose, which we, you know, have received into our liturgy. For my 
own part, I am not yet, after more than the thousandth time of using it, tired 

VOL. IV. B b 


liturgy. So much does passion and misguided zeal transport the 
most sensible, that this man, otherwise sagacious enough, never 
considered how ill an instance he had made ; which shewed it was 
the coldness of the votary, and not the prayer, that was in fault, 
whenever fervour was deficient at the public office of the church. 

The charity and extent of his prayers was as exuberant as the 
zeal and fervour : he thought it very unreasonable that our inter- 
cessions should not be as universal as our Saviour's redemption 
was : and would complain of that thrift and narrowness of mind 
to which we are so prone, confining our care either to ourselves 
and relatives, or at most to those little angles of the world that 
most immediately concerned us, and which on due account bear 
very low proportion to the whole. There was no emergent dis- 
tress however remote, but it enlarged his Litany ; every year's 
harvest and new birth of mischiefs, which for several ones past 
constantly fell on the orthodox and loyal party in the nation, 
removed itself from the sanguinary edicts of the tyrant, to be 
transcribed and expiated by his pathetical office of devotion. In 
which calendar and rubric the thirtieth of January was sure to 
have a very solemn place, and a peculiar service prepared for it. 

Nor did he only take to heart general national concernments, 
but even the more private exigencies of the sick and weak had a 

with it : and now, when I rehearse it in the church, am otherwise elevated 
and affected with the noble simplicity thereof, than, I am fully persuaded, I 
ever should be with the most trim, polite, or spirited orations of your popular 
and admired ministers, and much less with the natter and coarser ones of 
many others. I may also instance in divers other parts of our daily service, 
and in the whole of the communion office ; which some of yourselves have 
allowed to be admirable, and I will venture to say none can use, though he 
had used it before ever so often, with any formality or deadness of spirit, 
unless he has a heart so frozen, and utterly estranged from all devotion, as 
to be incapable of being wrought up to it by any means whatever." Letter 
concerning the popular Pleas of Dissenters, by John White, B.D. p. 45. Lon- 
don, 1745, 8vo. 

" Till this time " (says one, who was afterwards deservedly famous for 
his extemporary effusions, both in prayer and in preaching, the eminent 
Richard Baxter, speaking of his younger years) " I was satisfied in the 
matter of conformity. Whilst I was young I had never been acquainted 
with any that were against it, or that questioned it. I had joined with the 
Common Prayer with as hearty fervency as afterwards I did with other 
prayers. As long as 1 had no prejudice against it, I had no stop in my 
>li votions from any of its imperfections." Baxter's Life and Times, part i. 
p. 13. 


staple interest in his prayers. Among all which none had so 
liberal a part as they that merited them least, yet wanted them 
most ; his and (what was usually the same thing) the church's and 
God's enemies. He never thought he had assured his forgiveness 
of injuries unless he returned good for them ; and though other 
opportunities of this best kind of retaliation might fail him, that 
of his intercessions never did. 

Three persons there were who above all men by unworthy 
malice and impotent virulence had highly disobliged him : but he 
in recompence of their guilt had a peculiar daily prayer purposely 
in their behalf: and though in the openness of his conversation 
with his most intimate acquaintance he confessed thus much, yet 
he never named the persons, though probably that was the only 
thing which he concealed ; it being his method to withhold no- 
thing especially of confidence or privacy, from one he owned as 

And having mentioned the name of friend, however incident- 
ally, we must not leave it without homage ; friendship being the 
next sacred thing unto religion in the apprehensions of our excel- 
lent doctor, a virtue of which he was a passionate lover, and with 
which he ever seemed to have contracted friendship. The union 
of minds thereby produced he judged the utmost point of human 
happiness, the very best production that nature has in store, or 
grows from earth. So that with compassion he reflected on their 
ignorance who were strangers to it, saying that " such must needs 
lead a pitiful insipid herb-John-like life." 

Upon this ground he used with all industrious art to recom- 
mend and propagate friendship unto others ; and where he saw 
several persons that he judged capable of being made acquainted 
to mutual advantage, he would contrive that league ; and where 
himself had kindness unto any so allied, he would still enjoin them 
to be kinder to each other than to him ; besides, he still laboured 
to make all his friends endeared to each of them : resolving it to 
be an error bottomed on the common narrowness of soul which 
represented amity like sensual love, to admit no rivals, confined 
unto two persons. 

When he ever happened to see or be in company with such as had 
an intimate and hearty kindness for each other, he would be much 
transported in the contemplation of it, and where it was season- 
able, would openly acknowledge that his satisfaction. 

In the list and number of his friends there chanced to be three 

B b 2 


persons, who having in their youth contracted a strict intimacy, 
had undertaken the same profession : and accordingly had the 
same common studies and designments, and with these the oppor- 
tunity through the late troubles to live in view of each other : 
whom for that reason he was used with an obliging envy to pro- 
nounce " the most happy men the nation had." 

Accordingly he professed that for his particular " he had no 
such way of enjoying any thing as by reflection from the person 
whom he loved ; so that his friend^s being happy was the readiest 
way to make him so." Therefore when one eminently near to 
him in that relation was careless of health, his most pressing 
argument was his complaint of unkindness to him. And this way 
of measuring felicities was so natural to him, that it would occur 
even in the most trivial instances : when there has been any thing 
at the table peculiarly wholesome in relation to his infirmities, if 
his friend, who was in a like weak condition, forbare to eat of it 
in civility to him, he would with vehemence of grief resent it as 
his singular unhappiness after so many professions not to be be- 
lieved, " that he had a thousand times rather that his friend 
should have that which was conducible to health, than to have it 
himself;" and then assumed, "that if this were believed, it were 
impossible any one should attempt to express kindness by robbing 
him of his greatest pleasure." 

The principal thing he contracted for in friendship was a free 
use of mutual admonition ; which he confined not to the grosser 
guilts which enemies and common fame were likely to observe and 
mind men of, but extended it unto prudential failings, indecen- 
cies, and even suspicious and barely doubtful actions : nay beyond 
that, unto those virtuous ones which might have been improved 
and rendered better. He was used to say, " it was a poor design 
of friendship to keep the person he admitted to his breast only 
from being scandalous, as if the physician should endeavour only to 
secure his patient from the plague." And what he thus articled 
for, he punctually himself performed, and exacted back again to 
be returned unto himself. 

And if for any while he observed that no remembrance had 
been offered to him, he grew afraid and almost jealous of the 
omission, suspecting that the courtier had supplanted the friend, 
and therefore earnestly enforced the obligation of being faithful 
in this point : and when with much ado somewhat of advertise- 
ment was picked up, he received it always as huge kindness ; and 


though the whole ground of it happened to be mistake, yet he 
still returned most affectionate thanks. 

His good- will when placed on any was so fixed and rooted, that 
even supervening vice, to which he had the greatest detestation 
imaginable, could not easily remove it, the abhorrency of their 
guilts leaving not only a charity but tenderness to their persons ; 
and, as he has profest, his concernment rather increased than 
lessened by this means, compassion being in that instance added 
unto love. There were but two things which (he would say) were 
apt to give check to his affections, pride and falseness : where he 
saw these predominant, he thought he could never be a friend to 
any purpose, because he could never hope to do any good ; yet 
even there he would intend his prayers, so much the more by how 
much the less he could do besides. But where he saw a mal- 
leable honest temper, a Jacob's plain simplicity, nothing could 
there discourage him ; and however inadvertency or passion, or 
haply some worse ingredient, might frustrate his design, he would 
attend the mollia tempora, as he called them, those gentle and 
more treatable opportunities which might at last be offered. He 
so much abhorred artifice and cunning, that he had prejudice to 
all concealments and pretensions. He used to say he hated a 
non-causa, and he had a strange sagacity in discovering it. When 
any with much circumlocution and contrivance had endeavoured 
to shadow their main drift and purpose, he would immediately 
look through all those mists, and where it was in any degree 
seasonable, would make it appear he did so : his charity of 
fraternal correption having only this caution or restraint, the 
hearer's interest, of which he judged, that when advice did not do 
good, it was hardly separable from doing harm ; and on this 
ground sometimes he did desist. But wheresoever he gave an 
admonition, he prefaced it always with such demonstrations of 
tenderness and good-will, as could not fail to convince of the affec- 
tionate kindness with which it was sent, though it could not of 
the convenience or necessity to embrace it. And this he gave as 
a general rule, and enforced by his example, never to reprove in 
anger or the least appearance of it. If the passion were real, 
that then was evidently a fault, and the guilty person most unfit 
to be a judge : if it were resemblance only, yet even that would 
be so like to guilt, as probably to divert the offender from the 
consideration of his failance to fasten on his monitor, and make 


him think he was chid not because he was in fault, but because 
the other was angry. 

Indeed the person who would not be some way moved with his 
advices must be strangely insensate and ill-natured. Though his 
exhortations had as much evidence and weight as words could 
give them, he had over and above a great advantage in his manner 
of speaking : his little phrase, " Don't be simple," had more power 
to charm a passion than long harangues from others ; and very 
many who loved not piety in itself, nor to be troubled with the 
news of it, would be well pleased to be invited and advised by 
him, and venerated the same matter in his language which they 
have derided in another's. 

He would say, " he delighted to be loved, not reverenced ;" 
thinking that where there was much of the latter, there could not 
be enough of the former ; somewhat of restraint and distance 
attending on the one, which was not well consistent with the per- 
fect freedom requisite to the other. But as he was thus no friend 
to ceremonious respect, he was an open enemy to flattery, espe- 
cially from a friend, from whom he started to meet the slightest 
appearance of that servile kindness. Having upon occasion com- 
municated a purpose against which there happened to lie some 
objections, they being by a friend of his represented to him, he 
immediately was convinced, and assumed other counsels. But in 
process of discourse it happened something fell in that brought to 
mind a passage of a late sermon of the doctor's, which that per- 
son having been affected with, innocently mentioned such appre- 
hensions of it, and so passed on to talk of other matters. The 
next day the doctor having recollected that probably the approba- 
tion given to the passage of the sermon might be an after-design 
to allay the plain-dealing which preceded it, expostulated his sur- 
mise, protesting " that nothing in the world could more avert his 
love and deeply disoblige him, than such unfaithfulness." But 
being assured that there was no such art or contrivance meant, 
he gladly found, and readily yielded himself to have been mistaken. 
In other cases he was no way inclinable to entertain doubts of 
his friends'* kindness : but if any irregularity chanced to inter- 
vene, and cause misapprehensions, he gave them not leave to root 
and fasten by concealment, but immediately produced his ground 
<>l jralnusy ; and exacted the like measure back again, if his own 
dings fell at any time under a doubtful or unkind apj- 


ance. This he thought a justice essential to friendship, without 
which it could not possibly subsist : for we think not fit to con- 
demn the most notorious malefactor before he hath had license to 
propose his plea ; and sure it is more strangely barbarous to treat 
a friend, or rather friendship itself, with less regard. 

To the performances of friendship he hated all mercenary 
returns, whereof he was so jealous, as hardly to leave place for 
gratitude. " Love," he said, " was built upon the union and 
similitude of minds, and not the bribes of gifts and benefits." So 
generous was he herein, that he has oft profest, he " admitted 
retributions of good turns, yet not so much on any score, as that 
his friend might have the pleasure of being kind." 

There was a person of quality, a great and long sufferer in the 
late times of trial, to whom the doctor had frequently sent sup- 
plies, and continued so to do, till there happened at last a change 
in the condition of the correspondent, such a one as, if it did not 
supersede the need of farther assistance, yet gave promise of an 
approaching affluence ; whereupon the doctor feared the adding a 
new obligation in this conjuncture of affairs might seem a piece 
of design rather than kindness or charity : and though this sug- 
gestion was not of force to divert his purpose, it proved sufficient 
to suspend it, till by inquiry he found his designed present would 
be a relief, and then he thought it an impertinence to consider 
what it could be called besides. 

But doing good to relatives or being kind unto acquaintance 
were low expressions of this virtue we exhibit. Misery and want, 
where- ere he met with them, sufficiently endeared the object. 
His alms were as exuberant as his love ; and in calamities to the 
exigence he never was a stranger, whatever he might be to the 
man that suffered. 

And here the first preparative was to leave himself no motive 
to resist or slight the opportunities of giving ; which he com- 
passed by being a steward to himself as well as unto God, and 
parting still with the propriety of a set portion of his estate, that 
when at any time he relieved the wants of any, he might become 
no whit the poorer by his gift, have only the content of giving, 
and the ease of being rid of keeping another's money. The rate 
and sum of what he thus devoted was the tenth of all his income ; 
wherein he was so strictly punctual, that commonly the first thing 
he did was to compute and separate the poor man's share. To 
this he added every week five shillings, which had been his lowest 


proportion in the heat of the war in Oxford, when he lived upon 
his Penshurst stock, and had no visible means or almost possibi- 
lity of supply. Over and above this he completed the devotions 
of his weekly fast by joining alms thereto, and adding twenty 
shillings to the poor man's heap. 

These were his debts to charity, the established fixed revenue 
of the indigent ; in the dispensation of which he was so religiously 
careful, that if at any time he happened to be in doubt whether 
he had set apart his charitable proportions, he always past sen- 
tence against himself, resolving it much better to run the hazard 
of having paid the same debt twice, than to incur the possibility 
of not having done it once. But beyond these he had his free- 
will offerings, and those proportioned more by the occasion of 
giving, than the surplusage he had to give. His poor man's bag 
had so many mouths, and those so often opened, that it frequently 
became quite empty ; but its being so never diverted him from 
relieving any that appeared in need ; for in such seasons he chose 
to give in more liberal proportions than at others. 

In the time of the war at Oxford, to pass by other lesser 
reliefs, and many great ones, which his industrious concealment 
lias preserved from all notice of the most diligent enquiry, though 
he were then at a very low ebb, he furnished an indigent friend 
with sixty pound, which never was repaid him: as also upon 
another score he parted with twenty pound, and another consider- 
able sum besides that : and to one in distress about the same 
time and on the same occasion an hundred pound. 

Instead of hiding his face from the poor, it was his practice 
still to seek for theirs. Those persons whom he trusted with 
(his greatest secret and greatest business) his charity, seldom 
had recourse to him, but he would make enquiry for new pension- 
ers: and though he had in several parts of the nation those 
whom he employed to find out indigent persons, and dispose his 
largess to them, and though the tyranny that then prevailed 
made every day store of such ; his covetous bounty still grasped 
for more. Besides his ordinary provision for the neighbouring 
poor, and those that came to look him out in his retirement, 
(which were not few ; for that the liberal man dwells always in 
the road) his catalogue had an especial place for sequestered 
divines, their wives and orphans; for young students in the 
universities, and also those divines that were abroad in banish- 
ment : where over and above his frequent occasional reliefs to 


the last of these, the exiled clergy, besides what he procured 
from others, he sent constantly over year by year a very con- 
siderable sum, such a one as men of far greater revenues do not 
use upon any occasion to put into the corban, and give away, 
much less as a troublesome excrescence every year prune off, and 
cast from their estates. 

Now if we enquire into the stock and fountain that was to feed 
all these disbursements, it was at his flight from Penshurst 
barely three hundred pounds ; which, at the sale of a lease left 
him for his portion from his father, and the assistance of his 
prebend in Christ-church, after all his lavish charities during 
those years, was near upon a thousand. The taking of use 
though he judged lawful, yet never approved by practice, but 
lent still gratis both to friends and strangers. The only other 
way he had of income was the buying of leases for years, and the 
printing of his books ; from the latter of which when there is 
defaulked the many whole editions he had nothing for, the charge 
he was at in the sending of his copies before he printed them 
unto his friends for their animadversions and advices, his sending 
them sheet by sheet when printed, and surveying the revises, and 
the great numbers he gave away to his acquaintance, it will 
appear that the remainder was but a slight matter. As for 
private contributions or assistance of that kind, he had never 
any : for though there were many who would gladly have made 
those oblations, yet he industriously prevented them by publicly 
avowing that he needed not. In which refusal he was so peremp- 
tory, that when being in Oxford made prisoner at the sign of the 
Bear, thence to be sent immediately to Wallingford castle, a 
gentleman, perfectly a stranger to him, and coming by chance to 
the inn, and hearing of his condition, having fifty pieces by him, 
would needs have presented them to him; though the doctor 
had before him the barbarous usage of his brethren, clapped on 
ship-board under hatches, the like to which he might probably 
enough meet with ; and though this extraordinary occurrence 
seemed to carry with it somewhat of providential designment ; 
yet he wholly refused the offer; as afterwards he did a far 
greater sum from a person of honour that courted him with it. 
Only one twenty pound he was surprised by, and thought fit to 
accept, which after some dispute with himself he did upon these 
two grounds : first, that he might not gratify the pride, from 
whence he was used to say men's reluctancies to receive benefits 


proceeded ; and secondly, that he might not give the gentleman 
the discomfiture of seeing he had made an unseasonable offer. 

But with all this disproportioned expence unto revenue (a thing 
which after a very deliberate and strict enquiry remains riddle 
still, and an event next door to miracle) the doctor daily improved 
in his estate, and grew in spight of all his liberality rich, being 
worth at the time of his death about 1500, which yet we are not 
to marvel should be strange to us, since it was so to the doctor 
himself, who often professed to wonder at it, and thereupon would 
apply this axiom, " that half is more than the whole," his mean 
revenue by being scattered in the worst of times growing upon 
him, when others that had great ones, by griping made them less, 
and grew stark beggars. 

As the doctor was thus charitable, so was he genteel and libe- 
ral ; his openness of hand in secular occasions was proportionable 
to that in sacred. When any one had sent him a slight present 
of apples or the like, his reward would usually much exceed the 
value ; and he would be so well pleased to have such an occasion 
of giving to a servant, saying, " Alas, poor soul, I warrant he is 
glad of this little matter," that this seemed a part of the sender's 
courtesy. Thus if there happened any other occasion of giving, 
or of gratifying, or advancing public works, (for instance the 
great Bible 5 , upon which he was out 501. ; and reimbursed him- 
self only by selling two. copies,) he would be sure to do it at a 
free and highly ingenuous rate. So that he was sparing only to 
himself, and that upon no other principle, but thereby to be 
liberal to those he loved better than himself, the necessitous and 
poor. A pregnant instance whereof may be, that the doctor 
upon occasion calculating his expences on himself, found them to 
be not above five pound in the year. 

Besides this, he had a further impediment to riches, an easiness 
which alone has wasted other men's estates; he commonly mak- 
ing those he dealt with their own arbitrators, and if they seriously 
professed they could go no higher, he descended to their terms. 
saying commonly, that " this trash was not worth much ado." 
And beyond this he was so careless after bargains, that he never 
received script of paper of any to whom he lent, nor bond of any 
for performance of covenants, till very lately from two persons, 
when he found it necessary to use that method with them. 1 1 

5 The great Bible.] Bishop Walton's Polyglot. 


was used to say, " that if he thought men knaves he would not 
deal with them ; and if indeed they were so, it was not all his 
circumspection that could prevent a cheat : on the other side, 
if they were honest, they needed no such caution." And pos- 
sibly, if we consider the whole matter, there was not such impru- 
dence in the manage as at first appears : for bonds would have 
signified little to him, who in the best times would scarce have 
put them in suit ; but would certainly have starved before he 
would have made an application to those judicatories which of 
late prevailed, and usurped the protection as well as the posses- 
sion of men's rights, and were injurious not only in their oppres- 
sions but reliefs. 

In those black days, being charged with the debt of about fifty 
or sixty pounds, formerly by him paid, being offered a release if 
he would take his oath of payment, he thought the condition too 
unequal, and was resolved to double his payment rather than per- 
form it : but a farther enquiry having cleared the account, he 
incurred not that penalty. 

To a friend of his who, by the falseness of a correspondent 
whom he trusted, was reduced to some extremity, and enquired 
what course he took to escape such usage, the doctor wrote as 
follows : 

u To your doubt concerning myself, I thank God I am able to 
answer you, that I never suffered in my life for want of hand or 
seal, but think I have fared much better than they that have 
always been careful to secure themselves by these cautions. I 
remember I was wont to reproach an honest fellow-prebend of 
mine, that whensoever a siege was near, always sent away what 
he most valued to some other garrison or friend, and seldom ever 
met with any again, the solicitude was still their ruin : whereas I 
venturing myself and my cabinet in the same bottom, never lost 
any thing of this kind. And the like I have practised in this 
other instance. Whom I trusted to be my friend, all I had was 
in his power, and by God's blessing I was never deceived in my 
trust. 1 ' 

And here amidst all these unlikelihoods and seeming impossi- 
bilities, riches thrust themslves upon him, and would take no 
refusal ; it pleasing God, since he had exemplified the advices of 
his Practical Catechism to the duties of alms and charitable dis- 
tributions, in him also to make good and signally exemplify the 
assurance he there and elsewhere made in the behalf of almighty 


God upon such performance, the giving affluence of temporal 
wealth. Nor was he the single instance of this truth ; as he had 
proselytes to the speculative verity, he had partisans also of the 
effect and real issue of it. About four years since a person of 
good estate, and without charge of children, coming to visit the 
doctor, among other discourse happened to speak of the late dean 
of Worcester, Dr. Potter (whose memory, for his remarkable 
charity and all other excellencies befitting his profession and dig- 
nity in the church, is precious) : this gentleman there related, 
that formerly enquiring of the dean how it was possible for one 
that had so great a charge of children, was so hospitable in his 
entertainment, and profuse in liberality, not only to subsist, but 
to grow rich, he answered, that several years before he happened 
to be present at a sermon at St. PauFs Cross, where the preacher 
recommending the duty of alms and plentiful giving, assured his 
auditory that that was the certainest way to compass riches. He 
moved therewith, thenceforward resolved diligently to follow the 
counsel and expect the issue ; which was such as now created so 
much wonder. It fortuned that at that time when this was tell- 
ing, the doctor's Aeurepat $povr?&c were newly come out, and 
therewith this sermon of the Poor man's tithing. He therefore 
willing to improve the opportunity, confessed that he himself was 
that preacher which doctor Potter referred to, and that there 
was the very sermon : which immediately giving to this visitant, 
he desired almighty God it might have the like effect on him ; 
and so after a short civility dismissed him. 

As to the way and very manner of his charity, even that was 
a part of his donation and largess. One great care of his was 
to dispose of his reliefs so as to be most seasonable; to which 
purpose he had his spies and agents still employed to give 
him punctual notice of the occurrents in their several stations. 
His next endeavour was to dispense them so as to be most en- 
dearing. To persons that had been of quality he consulted to 
relieve their modesty as well as needs, taking order they should 
rather find than receive alms ; and knowing well they were pro- 
vided for, should not yet be able to guess by what means they 
were so. To those who were assisted immediately from his hand, 
he over and above bestowed the charities of his familiar and 
hearty kindness : in the expressiveness of which he was not only 
assisted by his habitual humility, or positive opinion, upon which 
he was used to say, "that it was a most unreasonable and 


unchristian thing to despise any one for his poverty :" but much 
more by the pleasure and transport which the very act of giving 
transfused into him : which whosoever noted, stood in need of no 
other proof of the truth of his usual affirmation, " That it was 
one of the greatest sensualities in the world to give." Upon 
which consideration he often took occasion to magnify the 
exceeding indulgence of God, that had annexed future rewards 
to that which was so amply its own recompence. 

Another circumstance in the doctor's liberality not to be 
passed over, was his choice of what he gave ; his care that it 
should not be of things vile and refuse, but of the very best he 
had. It happened that a servant in the family being troubled 
with the gout, the doctor gave order that he should have some 
of the plaister which he used in the like extremity ; but the store 
of that being almost spent, the person intrusted in this office 
gave of another sort, which was of somewhat less reputation. 
Which practice the doctor within a while coming to know, was 
extremely troubled at it, and complained of that unseasonable 
kindness unto him, which disregarded the pressing interests and 
wants of another person, and thereby gave him a disquiet parallel 
to that which a fit of the gout would have done. 

But besides this of giving, the alms of lending had an eminent 
place in the practice as well as judgment of the doctor. When 
he saw a man honest and industrious, he would trust him with a 
sum, and let him pay it again at such times and in such propor- 
tions as he found himself able : withal when he did so, he would 
add his counsel too, examine the person's condition, and contrive 
with him how the present sum might be most advantageously dis- 
posed ; still closing the discourse with prayer for God's blessing, 
and after that dismissing him with infinite affability and kindness. 
In which performance as he was exuberant to all, so most espe- 
cially to such as were of an inferior degree ; giving this for a rule 
to those of his friends that were of estate and quality, to " treat 
their poor neighbours with such a cheerfulness, that they may be 
glad to have met with them." And as upon the grounds of his 
most genteel and obliging humanity he never suffered any body to 
wait that came to speak with him, though upon a mere visit, but 
broke off his beloved studies, upon which his intention was so 
great, that he extremely grudged to be interrupted by any bodily 
concernment of his own, and so would often intermit his pre- 
scribed walks and suppers in pursuance of it : so with a more 


exceeding alacrity he came down when it was told him that a 
poor body would speak with him. Such of all others he loved 
not to delay ; and so much he desired that others should do the 
same, that when a lady of the house, diverted either by the 
attractives of his discourse, or some other occasion, delayed the 
clients of her charity in alms, or that other most commendable 
one in surgery, he in his friendly way would chide her out of the 

As poverty thus recommended to the doctor's care and kind- 
ness, in an especial manner it did so when piety was added to it : 
upon which score a mean person in the neighbourhood, one 
Houseman, a weaver by trade, but by weakness disabled much to 
follow that or any other employment, was extremely his favourite. 
Him he used with a most affectionate freedom, gave him several 
of his books, and examined his progress in them ; invited him, 
nay importuned him, still to come to him for whatever he needed, 
and at his death left him ten pounds as a legacy. A little before 
which fatal time, he and the lady P. 6 being walking, Houseman 
happened to come by, to whom after the doctor had talked a 
while in his usual friendly manner, he let him pass ; yet soon after 
called him with these words, " Houseman, if it should please 
God that I should be taken from this place, let me make a bar- 
gain between my lady and you, that you be sure to come to her 
with the same freedom you would to me for any thing you want :" 
and so with a most tender kindness gave his benediction. Then 
turning to the lady, he said, " Will you not think it strange I 
should be more affected for parting from Houseman than from 
you ? " His treating the poor man when he came to visit him in 
his sickness was parallel hereto in all respects. 

Such another acquaintance he had at Penshurst, one Sexton, 
whom he likewise remembered in his will, and to whom he was 
used to send his more practical books, and to write extreme kind 
letters, particularly enquiring of the condition of himself and 
children ; and when he heard he had a boy fit to put out to 
school, allowed him a pension to that purpose : and also with 

6 The Lady P.] Dorothy, fifth and youngest daughter of Thomas, first 
lord Coventry, lord keeper of the great seal, wife of sir John Pakington, bart., 
of \Vestwood (see p. 403) to whom lord Coventry had been guardian. This 
excellent lady is believed by many writers to have been the author of The 
Whole Duty of Man. She died on the 13th May, 1679. 


great contentment received from him his hearty, though scarce 
legible, returns. 

Nor will this treatment from the doctor seem any thing strange 
to them that shall consider how low a rate he put upon those 
usual distinctives, birth or riches ; and withal how high a value 
on the souls of men : for them he had so unmanageable a passion, 
that it often broke out into words of this effect, which had with 
them still in the delivery an extraordinary vehemence, " O what 
a glorious thing, how rich a prize for the expense of a man^s 
whole life were it to be the instrument of rescuing any one soul ! " 
Accordingly in the pursuit of this design he not only wasted 
himself in perpetual toil of study, but most diligently attended 
the offices of his calling, reading daily the prayers of the church, 
preaching constantly every Sunday, and that many times when he 
was in so ill a condition of health, that all besides himself thought 
it impossible, at least very unfit, for him to do it. His subjects 
were such as had greatest influence on practice, which he pressed 
with most affectionate tenderness, making tears part of his ora- 
tory. And if he observed his documents to have failed of the 
desired effect, it was matter of great sadness to him : where 
instead of accusing the parties concerned, he charged himself 
that his performances were incompetent to the designed end, and 
would solicitously enquire what he might do to speak more plainly 
or more movingly ; whether his extemporary wording might not 
be a defect, and the like ? Besides this, he liberally dispensed all 
other spiritual aids. 

From the time that the children of the family became capable 
of it till his death, he made it a part of his daily business to 
instruct them, allotting the interval betwixt prayers and dinner 
to that work, observing diligently the little deviations of their 
manners, and applying remedies unto them. In like sort, that he 
might ensnare the servants also to their benefit, on Sundays in 
the afternoon he catechised the children in his chamber, giving 
liberty nay invitation, to as many as would to come and hear, 
hoping they happily might admit the truths obliquely levelled, 
which bashfulness persuaded not to enquire for, lest they thereby 
should own the fault of former inadvertence. Besides he publicly 
declared himself ready and desirous to assist any person single ; 
and to that purpose having particularly invited such to come at 
their leisurable hours, when any did so, he used all arts of en- 
couragement and obliging condescension ; insomuch that having 


once got the scullion in his chamber upon that errand, he would 
not give him the uneasiness of standing, but made him sit down 
by his side : though in other cases, amidst his infinite humility, 
he knew well how to assert the dignity of his place and function 
from the approaches of contempt. Upon this ground of ardent 
love to souls, a very disconsolate and almost desponding person 
happening some years since to come to him, there to unload the 
burthen of his mind, he kept him privately in his chamber for 
several days with a paternal kindness, answering every scruple 
which that unhappy temper of mind too readily suggested, and 
with unwearied patience attending for those little arguments 
which in him were much more easily silenced than satisfied. This 
practice continued, till he at last discovered his impressions had 
in good proportion advanced to the desired effect, which pro- 
ceeded carefully in this method, that duty still preceded promise, 
and strict endeavour only founded comfort. 

On the same motive of this highest charity, when some years 
since a young man, (who by the encouragement of an uncle, for- 
merly the head of an house in Oxford, had been bred up to 
learning, but by his ejectment at the visitation was diverted from 
that course to a country-life, and being so, to engage him therein 
was also married and had children ;) amidst his toilsome avoca- 
tions continued to employ his vacant hours in study, and happen- 
ing on some of the doctor's writings, was so affected with them, 
as to leave his wife and family and employment, to seek out the 
doctor himself, whom being accordingly addressed unto, the ex- 
cellent doctor met this unknown romantic undertaker with his 
accustomed kindness, and most readily received this votary and 
proselyte to learning into his care and pupilage for several years, 
affording him all kind of assistance both in studies and temporal 
support, till he at last arrived at good proficiency in knowledge, 
and is at present a very useful person in the church. 

Nor could this zeal to the eternal interest of souls be super- 
seded by any sight of danger however imminent. The last y-ar. 
one in the neighbourhood mortally sick of the small-pox desiring 
the doctor to come to him, as soon as he heard of it, though the 
disease did then prove more than usually fatal, and the doctors 
age and complexion threatened it particularly so to him ; and 
though one might discern in his countenance vigorous apprehen- 
sions of the danger, he presently suppressed his fears, staying 
only so long as to be satisfied whether the party was so sensible 


that a visit might possibly be of use, and being informed thereof, 
cheerfully went ; telling the person that happened to be present, 
whose dreads in his behalf were not so easily deposited, that " he 
should be as much in God's hands in the sick man's chamber as 
in his own :" and not contented with going once, appointed the 
next day to have returned again ; which he had done, had not 
the patient's death absolved him of his promise. 

So likewise when at another time a gentleman of no very laud- 
able life had in his sickness desired to speak with the doctor, 
which message through the negligence of the person employed 
was not delivered till he that sent it was in the last agonies of 
death ; the doctor was very much affected at it, passionately com- 
plaining of "the brutishness of those that had so little sense of a 
soul in that sad state :" and pouring out his most fervent prayers 
in his behalf, requested farther "that by this example others, 
and in particular the companions of that unhappy person's vice, 
might learn how improper a season the time of sickness, and how 
unfit a place the death-bed is for that one great important work 
of penitence, which was intended by Almighty God the one com- 
mensurate work of the whole life." 

But though to advance the spiritual concerns of all that could 
in any kind become receptive of the good he meant them was his 
unlimited designment and endeavour, yet to nourish and advance 
the early virtue of young persons was his more chosen study. 
When he saw such a one, he would contrive and seek out ways 
to insinuate and endear himself, lay hold of every opportunity to 
represent the beauty, pleasure and advantage of a pious life ; and 
on the other side to express the toil, the danger and the mischief 
of brutal sensuality. Withal he would be still performing cour- 
tesies, thereby to oblige of very gratitude to him, obedience and 
duty unto God. 

Where to pass by the many instances that he gave of this his 
charity, it will not be amiss to insist on one as a specimen of the 
rest, which was thus. It happened during the doctor's abode in 
Oxford in the war, that a young man of excellent faculties and very 
promising hopes in that place, by his love to music was engaged 
in the company of such who had that one good quality alone to 
recommend their other ill ones. The doctor finding this, though 
otherwise a stranger to the person, gave him in exchange his 
own ; and taking him as it were into his own bosom, directed 
him to books, and read them with him, particularly a great part 

VOL. iv. c c 


of Homer, at a night dispatching usually a book, and if it proved 
holiday, then two ; where his comical expression was, when one 
Iliad was done, to say, " Come, because it is holiday, let us be 
jovial and take the other Iliad," reflecting on the mode of the 
former debauches, whose word it was, " It is holiday, let us take 
the other pint." 

And as the doctor laboured in the rescue of single persons, he 
had an eye therein to multitudes ; for wherever he had planted 
the seeds of piety, he presently cast about to extend and pro- 
pagate them thereby to others : engaging all his converts not to 
be ashamed of being reputed innocent, or to be thought to have 
a kindness for religion ; but to own the seducing men to God 
with as much confidence at least as others use when they are 
factors for the devil : and instead of lying on the guard and the 
defensive part, he gave in charge to chuse the other of the 
assailant. And this method he commended not only as the 
greatest service unto God and to our neighbour, but as the 
greatest security to ourselves ; it being like the not expecting of 
a threatened war at home, but carrying it abroad into the enei 
country. And nothing in the Christian's warfare he judged so 
dangerous as a truce, and the cessation of hostility. Withal, 
parly and holding intelligence with guilt in the most trivial 
things, he pronounced as treason to ourselves, as well as unto 
God : "for while," saith he, " we fight with sin, in the fiercest 
shock of opposition we shall be safe ; for no attempts can hurt 
us till we treat with the assailants : temptations of all sorts 
having that good quality of the devil in them, to fly when they 
are resisted." Besides, whereas young people are used to varnish 
over their non-performance and forbearance of good actions by a 
pretence unto humility and bashful modesty, saying, they are 
ashamed to do this or that, as being not able to do it well, he 
assured them, " This was arrant pride and nothing else." 

Upon these grounds his motto of instruction to young persons 
was, Principiis obsta, and Hoc age to withstand the overtures 
of ill, and be intent and serious in good ; to which he joined a 
third advice, " To be furnished with a friend." Accordingly at 
a solemn leave-taking of one of his disciples, he thus discour 
" I have heard say of a man who upon his death-bed being to 
take his farewell of his son, and considering what course of life 
to recommend that might secure his innocence, at last enjoined 
him to spend his time in making of VITSOS, and in dressing a 


garden ; the old man thinking no temptation could creep into 
either of these employments. But I instead of these expedients 
will recommend these other, the doing all the good you can to 
every person, and the having of a friend ; whereby your life shall 
not only be rendered innocent, but withal extremely happy." 

Now after all these excellencies, it would be reason to expect 
that the doctor, conscious of his merit, should have looked, 
if not on others with contempt, yet on himself with some com- 
placency and fair regard ; but it was far otherwise. There was 
no enemy of his, however drunk with passion, that had so mean 
an esteem either of him or of his parts as he had both of the 
one and other. As at his first appearing in public he was clearly 
overreached and cheated in the owning of his books ; so when 
he found it duty to go on in that his toilsome trade of writing, 
he was wont seriously to profess himself astonished at their 
reception into the world, especially, as he withal was pleased to 
add, since others failed herein, whose performances were infinitely 
beyond any thing which he was able to do. 

From this opinion of his mediocrity at best, and the resolution 
of not making any thing in religion public before it had under- 
gone all tests, in point not only of truth but prudence, proceeded 
his constant practice of subjecting all his writings to the censure 
and correction of his friends, engaging them at that time to lay 
aside all their kindness, or rather to evidence their love by being 
rigidly censorious. There is scarce any book he wrote that had 
not first travelled on this errand of being severely dealt with, to 
several parts of the nation before it saw the light; nay so 
scrupulous was the doctor herein, that he has frequently, upon 
suggestion of something to be changed, returned his papers the 
second time unto his censor, to see if the alteration was exactly 
to his mind, and generally was never so well pleased as when his 
packets returned with large accessions of objections and adver- 
tisements. And in this point he was so strangely adviseable, that 
he would advert unto the judgement of the meanest person, usually 
saying, that there was no one that was honest to him by whom he 
could not profit ; withal, that he was to expect readers of several 
sorts, and if one illiterate man was stumbled, it was likely others 
of his form would be so too, whose interest, when he writ to all, 
was not to be passed over. Besides, those less-discerning obser- 
vators, if they should do nothing else, he said could serve to 
draw teeth ; that is, admonish if ought were said with passion 

cc 2 


or sharpness, a thing the doctor was infinitely jealous of in his 
writings. Many years since he having sent one of his tracts 
unto an eminent person in this church, to whom he bore a very 
high and merited regard, to be looked over by him, he sending it 
back without any amendment, but with a profuse compliment of 
liking every thing; the good doctor was much affected with the 
disappointment, only comforted himself herein, that he had reaped 
this benefit, to have learned never to send his papers to that 
hand again ; which resolution to his dying day he kept. 

Nor was this caution before the publishing of his books suffi- 
cient, but was continued after it, the doctor importuning still his 
friends to send him their objections, if in any point they were not 
satisfied; which he with great indifference considered in his 
reviews and subsequent editions ; however took more kindly the 
most impertinent exception, than those advertisements of a dif- 
ferent kind which brought encomiums and lavish praises, which 
he heard with as great distaste as others do the most viruleht 

A farther proof of this low esteem the doctor had of himself 
(if such were possible) would be meekness to those that slighted 
him and disparaged his abilities ; this being the surest indication 
that our humility is in earnest, when we are content to hear ill 
language not only from ourselves but from our enemies : which 
with how